Tuesday, November 16, 2010


"No worries," I said, "I'll just take it out." It is always so easy to say that.

In sprucing up our barn, we moved the big door to right behind a stump.  Now it was time to take that stump out. 

It was a cherry tree, dead a few years.  My first thought was to cut it off at ground level, and deal with the remnant later.  A couple of cuts told me that was not going to work.  It was hard as can be, and my saw was not so sharp.

So I did it the old fashioned way.
I dug my way around the stump, exposing each root then tunneling under it.  Once I had clear airspace beneath it, I cut the root out with my chainsaw.  There were 8 or 9 big roots, and it took a while to make it all the way around.
Finally it started to wiggle.  A little more digging revealed two more roots, going almost straight down.  It was not long before it was laying on its side.
I filled the hole in with dirt and rocks, and mounded it a bit, hoping it will compact to level over winter.  I was much happier with this result than if I had just cut it off.  I know we would have been fighting that remnant, and eventually hired someone to come and grind it out.  This way, all it cost was two hours of my time, and a new edge for my chain.

(The only mishap was the groggy yellowjacket who somehow got into my pants.  A sting or two on the back of the knee was all the damage. Not bad, considering.)


  1. Looks like a good way to take out a stump. I need to devote an afternoon to the two Port Orford Cedar stumps in my front yard. Could be interesting to see how big a hole that will require! ;)

  2. Having watched my own husband do this with a couple of stumps, I know that this is a big job! The other advantage to this method is that you're not leaving a huge underground chunk of tree which will rot away and leave a sink hole.

  3. Hello Lee and Leigh. Thanks for the comments.

    Lee, it is a nice way to get a stump out. As Leigh says, it removes most of the rottable mass, so you don't develop a big hole later. And it saves the money a stump grinder would charge. That said, stump grinders are pretty cool, if that is what you need.


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