How To Kill a Tree Stump: The Full Information

Tree stumps are unpleasant annoyances for a lot of householders, however they are often eliminated via varied strategies, resembling pure landscaping elimination methods, chemical substances, and bodily elimination strategies. Tree trunks are unlikely to die on their very own. As a substitute, they live on in our backyard or yard, continuously sprouting new crops.

These new shoots are a results of the prolonged root system, which frequently nonetheless thrives underground even after the tree is lower down. Probably the most difficult tree stumps to eliminate are sometimes black locusts, maples, cottonwoods, Russian olives, Lombardy poplar timber, and the tree of heaven.

On this article, you’ll study in regards to the following methods to kill a tree stump and extra:

  • Pure tree stump elimination methods
  • Bodily tree stump elimination methods
  • Chemical substances for tree stump elimination

Pure Tree Stump Elimination Methods

Listed below are some garden care residence cures that you need to use to deal with the tree stump whereas avoiding the necessity for bodily or chemical elimination steps.

Epsom Salt

Epsom salt is a nice DIY technique for killing off tree stumps as a result of it quickens the decomposition course of. Sometimes, a tree stump takes three to seven years to die off naturally. Nevertheless, you may pace this course of as much as six to 12 months with Epsom salt.

Epsom salt incorporates sulfur and magnesium, that are wholesome minerals for crops however are deadly in giant doses. To make use of Epsom salt to kill a tree stump, take pure Epsom salt and water to create a potent combination to kill the stump’s root system. Then, drill a minimum of a dozen deep holes, about one inch vast and 10 inches deep, in numerous components of the stump.

Pour the Epsom salt combination into the drilled holes and canopy the stump with a tarp to stop rain from washing the combination away. Repeat this course of as soon as a month to poison the stump and its roots frequently.

When profitable, this technique will kill off the stump inside two to 3 months and be totally decayed after a 12 months.

Pressured Darkness

I like to recommend the pressured darkness technique if you happen to’re searching for a simple and cheap approach to kill a tree stump. Tree stumps want daylight to proceed rising, and stopping daylight from reaching the tree stump will finally kill it.

Cowl the tree stump with a light-resistant cowl, like an opaque trash bag, plastic bag, or darkish tarp. Your chosen cowl ought to be manufactured from a water-resistant materials.

This method is simple and cheap. Nevertheless, it will probably take greater than six months to your tree stump to die off, and your yard can have an unpleasant tarp current the entire time, so take that into consideration when selecting this technique to kill your tree stump.

Boiling Water

Boiling water can shock the foundation system, leading to intense harm and eventual demise. This technique is superb as a result of it’s fairly fast and cheap.

Begin by uncovering as a lot of the tree stump’s root construction as you may. Then, drill holes within the roots and on high of the stump to reveal the tree stump to the boiling water. As soon as the roots are uncovered and your holes are drilled, pour boiling water on high of them.

The boiling scorching water will shock the tree stump and its root system, leading to extreme harm and eventual demise. After the stump dies, pure decomposition will start.

Rock Salt

Rock salt is much like desk salt, besides it’s a lot much less refined and is available in giant chunks. The rock salt technique is much like utilizing Epsom salt to kill a tree stump. Nevertheless, rock salt will be dangerous to crops close to the tree stump, so I like to recommend solely utilizing rock salt if different strategies have been tried and failed.

To make use of rock salt to kill a tree stump, begin by drilling holes into the tree stump. Then, pack the holes with rock salt and canopy the stump with rock salt. Add a thick layer of soil and mulch on high of the stump, then pour water on high of the soil and mulch layer.

The water will assist the rock salt dissolve and encourage fungi progress, accelerating the tree stump’s decay.

For this technique, proceed watering the stump each couple of days for the primary one to 2 months to maintain the tree stump damp and preferrred for fungus progress.

Bodily Tree Stump Elimination Methods

When you’re keen on taking a faster, extra direct strategy to killing your tree stump, listed here are a few of the hottest bodily tree stump elimination methods.


Digging a tree stump out of your yard is efficient however onerous, time-consuming work that may destroy your yard or backyard within the course of.

While you dig out a tree stump, you’ll additionally must take away the tree roots, which will be deeply buried and widespread all through your yard. When you select this system, I strongly advocate hiring an expert or renting professional digging gear that will help you full the job as a result of this may be back-breaking work.

To dig out a tree stump, begin digging across the stump and discover as many roots as potential. Then, use a hatchet, handsaw, or chainsaw to cut the extra in depth roots. You may lower smaller roots with loppers or clippers. After coping with all of the roots, you need to be capable to elevate the tree stump out of the bottom.

Afterward, restore your yard by filling the big gap with grime and protecting it with mulch or topsoil.


Burning a tree stump is a fast and cost-effective approach to eliminate the unpleasant stump sitting in your yard. Nevertheless, this technique will be harmful and is against the law in some areas because of fireplace codes. So, if you happen to plan on burning your tree stump, first examine along with your native rules, then assess how secure it is going to be so that you can burn the tree stump. When you have many close by crops, this won’t be the perfect technique for you.

When you select to burn the tree stump, begin by clearing any crops, leaves, brush, and different flammable supplies away out of your stump. Then, utilizing a drill bit, drill many holes into the stump. Each gap ought to be a minimum of two inches vast and eight inches deep, even deeper when you have a really lengthy stump. These holes will enable fireplace to burn deep into your stump.

Subsequent, drench every gap with kerosene to ensure that the hearth reaches the underside of the stump. Place flammable supplies, like scrap wooden, wooden chips, or leaves on the floor of the stump and ignite them to start the hearth.

Proceed including flammable supplies to the highest of the stump till you might have a wholesome fireplace, then look ahead to the hearth to show the stump into ashes. This course of may take a number of hours, and the stump have to be checked all the time to make it possible for the hearth doesn’t unfold. I like to recommend preserving a fireplace extinguisher readily available throughout this course of.

After the stump turns into ashes, enable it to chill, then take away the ashes. Fill the outlet the place the stump as soon as was with soil and mulch.


Out of all of the strategies we’re speaking about at present, stump grinding might be the quickest approach to eliminate a tree stump. Nevertheless, you’ll must hire a stump grinder or rent a tree elimination specialist to finish this work, which can price you many hundred {dollars}.

When you select to grind the tree stump your self, start the method by trimming the stump as a lot as potential with a chainsaw, then dig across the stump and take away all seen rocks.

Subsequent, use the stump grinder machine to put on the wooden away and chop any roots nonetheless related to the stump. Remember that this course of can take many hours relying in your instruments, basic health, and the stump’s dimension. After eradicating the stump, fill the outlet in with grime and high with mulch or topsoil.

Exhausting the Tree’s Meals Reserves

One approach to bodily kill the tree stump is by exhausting the tree’s meals reserves. This technique could take years, relying on how giant the tree was and its present well being. When you proceed chopping the tree’s sprouts off, you may finally exhaust the tree’s meals reserves, ensuing within the tree’s demise. This technique is efficient, however you have to be very constant and instantly take away all spouts for this system to work.

Chemical substances for Tree Stump Elimination

Listed below are a few of the greatest chemical stump killers for tree stump elimination:

  • Tree stump remover: Buy a tree stump remover product for one of the best outcomes. Many tree stump killer merchandise have potassium nitrate, which naturally reduces the decaying course of to as little as 4 to 6 weeks, moderately than the years. These merchandise are designed to be safer for the setting. You may simply discover these merchandise at your native backyard provide retailer or on Amazon.
  • Insecticide-based tree stump removers: In case your useless stump is from a freshly lower tree, attempt a tree stump remover that makes use of pesticides to kill and restrict sucker regrowth. Apply this product instantly after a contemporary lower so it absorbs into the stem and roots rapidly.

Please just remember to observe the producer’s directions intently when utilizing any chemical product to take away giant stumps.

Chemical substances You Ought to By no means Use for Tree Stump Elimination

  • Bleach: Bleach presents many risks to the setting surrounding the tree stump as a result of it’s not meant to be a herbicide. A excessive focus of bleach could kill the tree stump. Nevertheless, close by flowers, grass, timber, and shrubs may be uncovered to the excessive ranges of chlorine present in bleach. Bleach also can elevate the pH ranges of the soil, which can lead to your surrounding crops withering away. 
  • Diesel: Diesel could also be a tempting possibility if you happen to’re contemplating burning your tree stump. Nevertheless, it’s not preferrred for creating the lengthy, constant burn wanted to kill the tree stump. 
  • Motor oil: Motor oil shouldn’t be designed for killing tree stumps. Not solely this, however the price of motor oil is akin to many stump killers, so that you wouldn’t be saving cash or time. 
  • Weed killer: Weed killer shouldn’t be designed to kill tree stumps and ought to be used as meant. 

4 Methods to Kill Timber That Don’t Work

  • Foliar Spray: This selection solely helps kill the foliage, not the branches or the stump.
  • Chopping It Down: Chopping the tree down won’t trigger the stump to interrupt down. The stump will nonetheless be current, however with no tree.
  • Copper Nails: Copper nails are unlikely to kill a tree. They’ll kill a small sapling, however not a big tree.
  • Jab of a Knife: A jab of a knife won’t kill a tree, for the reason that tree has taken a few years to develop to its full dimension. Reducing it with a knife may harm it, however the tree will heal once more and develop again.

These choices can actually assist start the method of killing the tree, nevertheless it doesn’t trigger it to die.

Continuously Requested Questions: The way to Kill a Tree Stump

What’s the quickest approach to eliminate a tree stump?

One of the best ways to take away a tree stump shall be a bodily tree stump elimination method, resembling burning, grinding, or digging. These strategies will be achieved inside a day, particularly if you happen to hire skilled gear to get the job executed rapidly.

Digging and grinding will be carried out utilizing specialty instruments, in the end ensuing within the useless tree stump and its roots being eliminated completely from the bottom. However, burning the tree stump will kill the plant itself and mean you can take away its ashes. Please observe that burning a tree stump is against the law in some areas because of fireplace codes, so all the time examine your native legal guidelines earlier than making an attempt to burn a tree stump.

What’s the most cost-effective approach to take away a tree stump?

The most cost effective approach to take away a tree stump is by pressured darkness, in any other case often known as ravenous the tree stump of daylight.

A tree stump wants daylight to thrive, so protecting it with an opaque, waterproof tarp or rubbish bag will stop the tree stump from getting daylight. With out daylight, the tree stump will die rapidly. Different low cost methods to take away a tree stump embrace burning it or utilizing boiling water to shock and kill the plant.

What’s the common price {of professional} tree stump elimination?

The typical price {of professional} tree stump elimination ranges from $200 to $500, relying on the place you reside, the dimensions of your tree stump, the kind of tree, and the tactic used.

How lengthy does it take to take away a stump?

The time it takes to take away tree stumps relies upon primarily on the tactic you’re utilizing. Grinding or digging the tree stump out could solely take sooner or later, relying on how giant the stump is, the gear used, and the way in depth its root system is.

Pure strategies, like Epsom salt or pressured darkness, are efficient however take months to kill the tree stump off totally. Chemical tree stump removers can speed up the method and often take 4 to 6 weeks. Take into account hiring a tree stump elimination skilled if you happen to’re searching for the quickest outcomes.

Can a tree develop from a stump?

Sure, a tree can develop from a stump, which is why you should act rapidly to kill the tree stump if you happen to don’t need the tree to develop again. Regrowth can occur as a result of a tree stump can nonetheless obtain vitamins from its many roots, leading to a tree rising from the sprouts across the stump.

Will pouring bleach on a tree stump kill it?

When you pour sufficient of it on a tree stump, bleach can kill it. Nevertheless, you may want to do that a number of occasions with the intention to see that the tree is useless. It could actually take weeks for the tree to point out indicators of dying, earlier than you try elimination.

Last Ideas

Tree stumps will be an eyesore in your in any other case lovely yard. I hope our article on killing a tree stump gave you some nice concepts on how one can go about killing the tree stump utilizing a easy and simple method. Don’t neglect to contemplate what you might wish to plant rather than the tree stump after it’s eliminated.

Learn out suggestions for rising flowers for extra recommendation.

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