There are some trees that are beautiful and add to the look of your lawn and landscaping. Then there are some trees that are ugly or a downright nuisance. Especially with all the invasive tree species that have started to invade North America in recent years.
Today more than ever homeowners across the United States and Canada have turned to trimming and outright removing trees for their yard. Of course, cutting an unwanted tree down is just the first step in what can become a rather long process.
You see a tree has just as much, if no more presence underground than it does in the sky, and some trees are tenacious. Especially invasive trees like the dreaded buckthorn that’s started to run rampant throughout North America.
Even after the trunk has been cut down and the inevitable brush pile has been dealt with, the stump and root mass of a tree may still be very much alive! Left to its own devices, the roots can attempt to refeed the existing stump, which could start sending out shoots as soon as the next spring. What you’re left with then is not only a stump but a nasty snarl of spindly shoots that even with constant pruning still find ways to spring anew.
Let’s say you get lucky and the original tree was old, or the stump and root mass simply choose to give up the ghost and die. Now you’re left with a rotting mass of wood that is sure to attract bugs, the animals that eat them, and other funky microbes. Not to mention problems with an invasive fungus that can sprout poisonous mushroom-like structures.
Even if you manage to cut the tree stump flush to the ground, and the root mass simply doesn’t have enough nutrient power left to sprout new shoots, you’re still left with a foreign mass that will leave a soft spot in your lawn for years to come. Worse still as the soil shifts, it could start to protrude a strange rotting mass that’s a serious tripping hazard, and could even damage the undercarriage of your riding lawnmower.
Can I Use A Commercial Stump Grinder?
There are some large rental companies and even major box retailers that will rent out commercial stump grinders to homeowners who need to deal with a stubborn stump or two. Depending on the rate they offer and how much demand there is for it during that particular time of year the cost can range between $100 to $400 per day. Of course, you also have to transport it to your property and learn how to operate it correctly. It’s not all that hard, but it’s also not a walk in the park either.
DK2 Power 14 x 4 in. wide 14HP Electric Start Stump Grinder with KOHLER Command Pro Gas Engine - OPG888E
14 in. x 4 in. - 14HP Stump grinder with KOHLER CH440 Command PRO commercial gas engine with ELECTRIC START
NorthStar Compact Stump Grinder — 160cc Honda GX160 Engine | Northern Tool
NorthStar Stump Grinder — 390cc Honda GX390 Engine | Northern Tool
DK2 Power Gas Powered Certified Commercial Frame Stump Grinder with 14HP Kohler Motor and Towbar Extra Cutting Teeth and Adjustable...
- & – If you need a solid stump grinder that can help you remove dozens of stubborn stumps, the DK2 is a fantastic option. This 12” commercial stump grinder is purposely designed with easy-to-use features implemented for better productivity and efficiency – constructed with dual locking hitch pins, a sturdy reinforced steel trolley and 2” double locking wheels on the axle for easy transport over rough terrain
Generac ST47019GENG Pro Stump Grinder, Orange, Black
- Carbide-tipped cutting teeth tackle any size stump
- Detachable tow bar makes for easy towing
- Constructed of 12 gauge steel; light weight, durable design
- Quickly eliminates stumps, expand lawn and field areas, and remove mowing hazards
- Generac G-Force power to make fast work of the toughest jobs
- Power source type: Gas Powered
DK2 Power Stump Grinder 14HP HD Commercial Frame with Kohler Motor w/Electric Start OPG888E
- Kohler 14 HP ch440 Commercial 3 yr warranty
- Dual direct V-Belt, high speed 3600 rpm drive.
- 12 High speed Machined Carbide Cutters 4 IN WIDE CUT.
- Top side EZ Belt tension adjustment
- ATV wheels on HD axle. Tire 13.75D x 5.25W 145/70-6
Bradco Sg30 Stump Grinder
- Package Dimensions: 48 L x 48 H x 40 W (inches)
- Package Weight : 795 pounds
- Country of Origin : United States
- Part number: 100320
Bluebird Turf Products SG13H Stump Grinder, Blue
- Welded 7-Gauge Steel
- Double V-Belt
- Noram centrifugal clutch, double v-belt
- 13 hp
Can I Hire A Professional Stump Grinding Company?
There are some landscaping and tree trimming companies that keep a stump grinder in their fleet arsenal. They usually offer their stump grinding service at specific times of the year in certain areas. It’s just more cost-effective for them, and sometimes they’ll even advertise when and where they are offering their stump grinding service. If you need them to grind your stump on-demand, on your schedule, they can probably accommodate you for an extra fee.
Ultimately, whether you are renting a stump grinder or hiring one out, it’s going to come with a high price tag, and you may or may not be able to have it done on your time table. They also tend to be the sort of thing you reserve for large stumps that are likely to cause problems or become an eyesore in your otherwise beautiful lawn.
Can You Manually Remove Stumps?
Of course, stump grinders haven’t been around for more than a few decades. In the past smaller stumps that were an inch or two or less in diameter could often be manually pulled out. If you’ve recently cut down some small invasive trees like buckthorn.
With dead stumps, some people would set campfires over them to burn them out and disassociate the roots. Though this was a long process that could take days, if not weeks to get the job done.
The Best Manual Stump Removing Tools & Stump Pullers
Brush Grubber BG-08 Heavy-duty Brush Grubber
- Easily pulls shallow-rooted trees and brush up to 4” in diameter from the ground roots and all to eliminate re-growth
- 16 total gripping teeth and the spring-loaded jaws ensure a strong and secure hold; the strong jaws open wide to handle bigger brush and the grip pads rotate 360 degrees to help avoid debarking
- Constructed of durable and long-lasting ¾” steel; attaches to any ATV or utility tractor
Brush Grubber BG-16 Shrub/Clump Grubber
- Easily pulls shallow-rooted, small shrubs and clumps up to 12” in diameter from the ground – roots and all to eliminate re-growth
- Made of 4’ of no-slip grip links for a strong and secure hold on shrubs and clumps; unique 3 chain system grips tight with the loop system that acts as a choker to hold tighter the harder you pull
- Hooks up easily to your ATV, UTV, or lawn tractor; constructed of especially designed steel links for a durable and long-lasting product with a bright green color to increase visibility
4 Inch Copper Nails for Killing Trees, 20 Pieces 4 Inch Solid Copper Nail Spikes with 2 Pieces 4 Inch...
- Package includes:20 x solid long copper nails (4 inch/ 100 mm), and 2 x long steel nails (4 inch/ 100 mm),it’s enough for multipurpose uses
- Copper nails for killing trees:these large copper nail spikes are effective for killing Trees,removing Stumps & Roots without without damaging the surroundings.
- Durable material:made of pure solid copper and steel,it will use for a long time without rust
- Apply to: these pure are the easiest and cheapest way to get rid of those annoying stumps and trees,will not disturb or harm surrounding areas,also these copper nail spikes are great for diy / home building projects, decor, boat building and more
Chemical And Microbial Stump Removers
In recent years, chemical and microbial stump removers have made some serious advancements in both effectiveness and safety. Some of the chemical stump removers break down the lignin that binds the cellular structure of wood together, whereas microbial stump removers gradually consume the stump leaving behind inert soil. These options also tend to be far more cost-effective than renting or hiring out a stump grinder.
The downside of chemical and microbial stump removers is that most take time. Even the fastest ones can take weeks to break a stump down and might need reapplication or additional elbow grease from you to remove compromised debris.
The Best Chemical & Microbial Stump Removers
Sanco Industries Root Destroyer - 2 Pounds (32 Ounces) - Copper Sulfate Pentahydrate
- Made up of copper sulfate crystals that will kill invasive septic and sewer pipe roots without harming your tree.
- Root Destroyer will temporarily reduce bacterial action, but will return to normal approximately 15 days after treatment.
- Only roots inside the leach line will be killed. Do not apply through sink or tub drains.
- Use Root Destroyer at the rate of 2 lb. in an active 300 gallon septic tank 2 twice a year or anytime you have reduced water flow thought to be caused by root growth occurs.
VPG Fertilome 32295 32Oz Brush Stump Killer
- This stump and brush remover is designed to kill stumps and woody plants like vines and weeds.
- For stump application use in its current form and use a brush (not included) to apply the product.
- For brush application mix 8 oz. of the concentrate in 1 gallon of water and spray on leaves.
- When applying the product to freshly cut stumps, apply within 45 minutes.
- See product label for a full list of woody plants and vines targeted by this product.
Spectracide HG-66420 Stump Remover, Case Pack of 1
- Destroys stumps: accelerates the rate of decomposition, making the stump porous
- Use with brush killer: before using Spectracide stump remover granules, kill freshly cut stumps with a brush killer product
- Easy to pour: pour granules easily into holes drilled in stump
- STUMP BURNING: Once the stump has become porous, it may be easily removed or burned -- see product label for details
Bonide (BND272) - Ready to Use Stump-Out, Easy Chemical Stump Remover for Old Tree Stumps (1 lb.)
- CHEMICAL REMOVAL - Unlike most other stump removers, Bonide Stump-Out Granules are made from sodium metabisulfite instead of potassium nitrate.
- OLD STUMPS - This stump killer is only going to work on tree stumps that have seasoned for 12-18 months prior to treatment. Use Stump & Vine Killer right after a tree is cut down so it does not re-sprout. A while after, you may treat with Stump-Out.
- NO CHOPPING OR DIGGING - There is no need to worry about chopping or digging up your tree stumps because this chemical remover will help to accelerate the decomposition of tree stumps.
Tree Stump Remover Granules (Professional Grade) (5 lb.)
- Accelerates stump decomposition.
- Will not harm surrounding plants.
- Simply and effective to use.
- Eliminate stumps!