If you lose a tree due to a storm or disease, you may be able to chop up most of the tree for easy disposal, but you're still faced with the problem of stump removal. Getting rid of tree stumps is difficult because of their size and the fact they are firmly rooted into the ground. Getting the stump out of the ground is hard enough, but then you have to figure out what to do with it. Here's what you need to know.
Why You Should Remove A Stump
If you have a huge yard and the tree stump is in a back corner, it may be acceptable to let it decompose naturally over a period of years. If the stump is in your front yard, you should probably get rid of it to keep it from being an eyesore. Even if you get it shaved down close to the soil, it still looks bad. You can try to cover it with potted plants or yard ornaments, but you can't really hide the fact you have an ugly tree stump in your yard. Another reason to get rid of a stump is so it won't attract ants and termites. You don't want a big colony of carpenter ants to take up residence in your yard and wander into your house to set up satellite nests.
Pull Out The Stump
One option you have for removing the stump is to pull it out. That takes a lot of work even if you have a tractor or truck to help. The big problem with pulling up a big stump is how you're going to dispose of it. You may have to pay a fee if you haul it to the dump. First, you have to figure out how to lift and transport it. Unless you live in the country and can toss the stump out of the way or bury it out of sight, it may be better to destroy the stump while it's still in place.
Kill The Stump
You can use various methods for destroying the stump without pulling it up. For instance, you could chop it up as well as possible and then burn it. Of course, if you live in the city, this might not be allowed since it will burn for quite a while. Even if you do this, it might not get rid of the stump below the surface. You can try injecting the stump with chemicals that kill it. These might work, but they take a long time. These methods usually require chopping away at the decayed parts and waiting for more decay to happen so you can chop that away. If you have plenty of patience and don't mind waiting, then a chemical stump remover might work, especially if the stump is fairly small.
Use A Stump Grinder
The quickest and easiest way to get rid of a tree stump is to use a grinder. This is a machine that rests on top of the stump and grinds it into wood chips right down to the soil. It not only gets rid of the stump right away, it eliminates the need to haul away a heavy stump. You may still need to dispose of the wood chips, but they are much easier to manage since you could even use them for mulch.
You can rent a stump grinder or hire a tree service, like Brown's Tree Service, to do the job for you. It will probably cost over a hundred dollars to rent a grinder, so it might be nearly the same expense to hire a tree service. A service generally charges by the size of the tree, and factors in other costs such as cleaning up the mess and replacing the sod. When you grind away the stump, it will be gone and covered with new grass in just a few hours, and no one will be able to tell a tree was there.