Shrub and Tree stumps - How To Remove Stumps from Cut Down Shrubs

by Dale
(Georgia)

I recently had some large shrubs cut down and now there are stumps about 7-9" round with large root systems underground. I want to use the area for planting vegetables and flowers.

Any suggestions on how to get these stumps out? (You can't even get a shovel in because of all the roots)

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Megan says...
Removing stumps and roots from shrubs and trees


If you are in a hurry to remove these stumps and roots and get your garden into production, then your best bet is to physically remove them. Easier said than done!

You'll need a good quality strong spade and either a mattock or crowbar. There are crowbar type tools that have a rounded tamping end and a wider sharper flat blade type head on the other end. These are often called demolition bars, rock bars, all purpose utility bars or landscape bars.

Roll up your sleeves and prepare to get fit and expect sore muscles the next day. First dig out as much dirt as possible in a circle trench around each stump. No need to go too close as it just makes your job harder because the roots are thicker. Now hack away with your mattock or bar and break any roots. Dig, hack, dig, hack, make a cuppa, sigh, dig hackā€¦.. and now prise, pull, lever... and there it goes! Well done.

By the way, it's best to wear strong boots, preferably with a steel cap just in case your aim goes awry.

Once you've got the main stumps and roots out, fill up the spaces with whatever material you have such as compost, soil, kitchen scraps, etc and follow with no dig layers. You will find that the remaining roots will eventually rot down.

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