Although arborists offer this service, many will instead choose to stump the tree they have just felled themselves. Indeed, this service can be quite expensive because it requires the use of large machinery.
If a tree stump remains after cutting a tree on your property, and if it prevents you from moving around or redoing your landscaping, know that there are a few tips and tricks to remove a stump yourself without too much effort. So here are some simple techniques to get rid of a stump easily.
1. How to remove a stump manually
Depending on the size of the stump, you might opt to remove it manually. To do this, you will need a good shovel, a power saw, safety equipment (gloves, glasses, etc.), and a little elbow grease.
Start by digging all around the stump to expose it as much as possible, as well as the most imposing roots. Cut off all visible roots and remove them, and using a chainsaw, cut the stump at its base. Then all you have to do is fill the hole with potting soil.
2. Remove a stump with a trimmer
Better known as a ‘stump grinder’ or ‘stump grinder,’ the stump trimmer is a large device you can hire to remove a stump as quickly as possible. This works thanks to a circular saw which trims the wood of the stump.
It requires some physical strength to control it, and trimming will produce many wood chips that will scatter all around the stump. However, it is the fastest way to remove a stump.
3. Remove a stump by burning it
If its location and your municipality allow it, you can get rid of a stump by burning it. It is enough to make a mound of wood, as in a fireplace, all around the stump and light everything. This technique takes time, and you will need to keep the fire going until the stump has burnt down.
Remember to take all necessary precautions to avoid accidents if you choose to burn the stump!
4. Eliminate a strain with sodium chlorate
To facilitate the decomposition of a fir or tree stump, sodium chlorate can be used. It suffices to drill holes of at least 2 centimeters in diameter on the top of the stump, every 10 centimeters, and of a depth of 20 centimeters. Then fill the holes with sodium chlorate and seal the holes with corks or wax.
This technique is not for those in a hurry, as decomposition can take a few months. Eventually, the stump wood will have softened enough to allow you to remove it with a shovel.
5. Remove a stump with garlic cloves
If you don’t have soda ash on hand or prefer a less chemical technique, you could remove the strain with garlic cloves. The technique is the same as for soda chlorate, but we insert garlic cloves in the holes. This process may take a few years, but garlic will speed up the decomposition of the wood.
6. Coarse salt to rot a stump
As with the technique using soda ash or garlic cloves, start by drilling several holes in the stump’s surface. Then fill the holes with coarse salt, and seal them with a cork or wax. As the salt has herbicidal properties, be careful not to spill it on the plantations around the stump. If you are worried about harming the plantations around the stump, use Epsom salt instead, using the same technique.
7. Destructive tree stump products
Several chemicals on the market are specifically designed to destroy tree stumps, including glyphosate-based Roundup or “Strain Killer.” Depending on the strain’s size, these products may take from a few weeks to a few months to work, and a second application may be necessary.
8. A garbage bag to eliminate a stump
To speed up the decomposition of a stump, you can shut off the light by covering it with a black garbage bag or tarp, which you will hold with stones or bricks. Eventually, the humidity will encourage the growth of fungi, which will begin the decomposition of the stump. This may take a few months, but you can eventually remove the stump piece by piece with a shovel or pickaxe.
9. Eliminate a strain with milk
According to some gardeners, it would be possible to eliminate a tree stump with churned milk (Ribot milk). Like the other techniques, it is necessary to start by drilling holes in the stump; then, one pours good milk quantities there. Once again, it will be necessary to plug the holes and wait a few months before seeing the effects of the decomposition of the stump.
10. What to do with a tree stump?
Did you know that there are alternatives to removing a tree stump? With a little creativity and a minimum effort, a stump can become a garden bench or a side table, a game of checkers or chess, and why not a pedestal for a beautiful flower pot or a sculpture?
If the stump is hollow in its center, we can even install small succulents, mosses, or a fern, and here it is transformed into a planter! Get inspiration on sites like Pinterest; there, you will find lots of great ideas to turn your tree stump into a real work of art.