How to Easily Remove a Tree Stump

Date September 03, 2020


Author TreeNewal Staff

Have you had a tree removed that you didn’t want or need in your yard, or removed it because even professional tree care techniques couldn’t save a diseased tree? Are you now left wondering how to perform tree stump removal to get rid of all evidence of the tree once and for all?

While you can manually remove tree stumps or use a stump grinder, there are a few other easier techniques to make tree stump removal a more simple do-it-yourself task, depending on the size of the tree stump and how deep its root system is. As a local tree care services company that has been servicing the Dallas area for 15 years, we are sharing 4 tips with you on how to perform tree stump removal yourself, including a discussion of the cost of stump removal depending on your chosen tree stump removal technique.

  • Perform Tree Stump Removal with Chemicals

One of the easiest ways to perform tree stump removal by yourself is to use chemicals to speed up the stump rotting process. Assuming you already have the necessary tools for this technique – which include a chainsaw, a drill, and an axe – the cost of stump removal via chemicals is only about $20.

To chemically remove a tree stump, you’ll first need to go to your local home improvement or gardening store and purchase some potassium nitrate, a tarp large enough to cover the tree stump, and some mulch. Next, use your chainsaw to cut the stump as close to ground level as possible, and then use your drill to drill holes in the top of the stump, closely together. Fill the holes first with water, and then with the potassium nitrate. Then, cover the stump with a tarp and add some mulch on top of the tarp to secure it and keep the moisture in.

Over the next few weeks, periodically check on the removal progress of the tree stump. Add more water, potassium nitrate, cover it back up with the tarp and add more mulch to the top of the tarp every time you check on the status of the tree stump.

About four to six weeks later, remove the tap from the tree stump to inspect it. You should see that the stump rotting process has been rapidly sped up. If the stump is soft enough, you can complete the tree stump removal by using your axe. If not, add more water and potassium nitrate, cover and mulch again, then check the status of the stump in a week or two to see if it’s ready to be finished off with your axe.

  • Burn Your Tree Stump

Burning your tree stump is another fast, do-it-yourself method of tree stump removal. The cost of tree stump removal by burning is relatively inexpensive.

To burn a tree stump, you’ll need the following items:

  • A product like Stump Out, which you can easily find on Amazon.
  • Kerosene.
  • A drill.
  • A bucket full of water or sand (in case the fire gets out of hand).

Start the process by drilling holes in the stump, then sprinkling your tree stump removal product like Stump Out on top of the stump. Pour the kerosene in the holes you drilled, then light the stump. Make sure to watch the burning tree stump carefully and never leave it unattended.

Once the burning is about finished, you can cover the stump with topsoil to stop the burning.

  • Manually Remove a Tree Stump

If you’re into physical labour, you can always manually remove a tree stump. The cost of stump removal when you choose to manually remove a tree stump can range from about $100 to $175 for the following tools (if you don’t already have them):

  • Digging bar
  • Bow saw
  • Axe
  • Mattock

It’ll likely be an all-day job – taking as much as 12 hours to complete – but manually removing a tree stump is a surefire way to get the job done. We recommend you don’t do it on one of our hottest summer days, though.

To manually remove a tree stump, you’ll need to follow these steps:

  • Use the broad end of the mattock to dig around the tree stump and loosen up the dirt that surrounds it.
  • Remove the loosened dirt with the shovel. Make sure that you remove enough dirt so that you see the tree’s roots.
  • Use either your mattock or small bow to sever the tree’s roots.
  • Continue digging and chipping away at the tree roots until you see the tree stumps’ taproot.
  • Use either your axe or your bow saw to remove the taproot.


  • Rent a Stump Grinder

Renting a stump grinder is a great way to make tree stump removal a weekend DIY project, and it’s a lot less physically demanding than manually removing a tree stump. The cost of stump removal with a rented stump grinder can range from $100 to $200 for the day. You’ll also need these additional tools:

  • A shovel.
  • A Mattock.
  • A Rake.
  • A chainsaw.

Start the process by using your shovel or mattock to clear the area around the tree stump. Next, use your chainsaw to cut the tree stump to as close to ground level as possible. Now it’s time to use the stump grinder. Ideally, you’ll go down about 3 inches and move it from side to side using its lever.

Grind the tree stump about 4 inches using the grinder wheel, and repeat. Your goal is to get the entire perimeter of the tree stump 4 inches underground level. Finally, fill in the hole that’s left from your tree stump with the wood chips created by using the stump grinder, then cover with topsoil or grass.

We’re Here for You if You Need Professional Tree Stump Removal

As ISA-Certified Arborists, we know that while tree stump removal can be a do-it-yourself task, sometimes you need to call in tree care professionals like us for help. We understand that you may not have time to remove a tree stump yourself. You might also need professional tree stump removal if you have a tree stump with a larger diameter, or if you need multiple tree stumps removed.

Whatever your unique case is, our North Texas tree care services company is here to help you. To schedule professional tree stump removal with us, call us today at tel:(817) 592-6846.

To learn more about How to Easily Remove a Tree Stump, call our Argyle and Southlake based teams at tel:(817) 592-6846 or send us a message.

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