How to Kill a Tree Stump | 8 Step Guide To Kill a Tree Stump (With Image)


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Well! If there is a tree stump in your backyard, and the new shoots are producing from it, you have to kill it in any way, or it will keep on growing. Tree stumps are the obstacles in your garden’s landscape and take up a significant part of the space, which can be used as a flat surface like grass or a flower bed. Hire the Survey experts to suggest you through step by step guide to kill a tree stump with the use of some products. In this article, you will have information about the issue of killing a tree stump.Even the stumps of small sizes are also challenging to remove because of the roots which grow deep into the soil. That is a natural system to hold the plant together and firm in the ground, so it will be tough to kill a tree stump. In this guide, I will tell you how to kill a tree stump in simple 8 steps.

How to Kill a Tree Stump

Follow the below 8 steps to kill a tree stump

  • Tree stump removal
  • Mix Epsom Salt and Water
  • Drill holes in the tree stump
  • Pour the chemicals in the drill holes
  • Cover the holes with Wax
  • Shield it from the sun
  • Burn the stump
  • Chop the tree stump

Now, I will go in detail of each process;

You can remove a tree stump by following the tips and killing it effectively, and then releasing it.

Mix Epsom Salt and Water

  • Epsom salt is a beneficial product for tree stump removal.
  • The salt contains a large amount of sulfur and magnesium. Epsom salt bath has many benefits as its hefty dose can kill mineral and moisture which they need to live.
  • Mix the Epsom salt with water and apply it to the tree stump.
  • 100% pure salt can be bought online from many retailers, as buying Epsom Saltis not tricky.
  • Killing tree stumps with Epsom salt and water is the natural stump removal method.
  • It would help if you started by making a mixture of 10 % Epsom salt and water to make a solution that will entirely kill the stumps’ root system.
  • However, the alternate method is to buy a readymade mixture of stump killer chemicals and directly mix it in the water.
  • The rock salt or Epsom salt does not harm the soil composition, so you should buy 100% pure salt that contains no additional components.

Drill holes in the tree stump

  • When Epsom salt and water treatment are complete, most holes need to be drilled into the stump to kill it.
  • Before you drill holes in the stump, you should cut the stump from the top as possible.
  • This is good because when you add chemicals to decompose a tree stump, it is more effective on fresh wood.
  • The drill holes should be at enough distance from each other and spread evenly on the top surface of the stump.
  • The distance between the holes should be one inch wide, 12 inches deep, and 3 to 4 inches away from the stump’s back edge.
  • You can drill even more holes at the angle of 45-degree angle on the rim of the stump.
  • The process of rottinga tree stump fastwill automatically speed up when the drill holes are connected to other holes.

Pour the chemicals in the drill holes

  • When you have drilled the holes into the stump, put the salt and water mixture into the holes slowly.
  • Cover the trunk with 100% Epsom salt and water to fill the holes and then leave it.
  • You should make sure that the mixture should not overflow from the stump’s top surface, thus preventing Epsom salt from escaping.
  • Three to 4 ounces of the solution will be enough for the treatment.
  • The chemicals will breakdown to half of the original amount, where the drying foliage is 2 to 3 months above the ground

Cover the holes with Wax

  • Fill up the holes up to ¾ with the rock salt.
  • Remember to drill holes in the aerial roots also.
  • Now drop the Wax of a plain, unscented candle into the holes to fill them.
  • It is essential to work with attention so that the salt may stay in place and do not scatter in the ground because excess salt is harmful to the top of the soil and other plants’ roots.
  • Now cover the tree stump with a trash bag, plastic tarp, or any other nonporous product. 
  • If sunlight and rain do not reach the stump top, it will die more quickly, and more roots cannot grow further.
  • The stump will die after six weeks to several months.
  • You should check the progress of the process regularly.
  • The stump will begin to fall ultimately.

Shielding it from the sun

  • This process is free but takes a longer time to give the results.
  • It is the best tree stump killeras it kills the stump slowly by stopping its basic requirements.
  • Cover the stump with a black trash bag so that it won’t get water and sunlight.
  • Wait for six months, and you will see that stump will die itself.
  • It will begin to rot and fall off.
  • When you see it is dying and begin to rot, use the stump removal chemicals to speed up the treatment. That is available in nurseries and garden centers.
  • Now add the Epsom salt into the cracks in the stump.
  • Covering the stump will prevent the growth of anything, and when the stump begins to die, you can cut the saplings from the base of the trunk.
  • You can paint it with the woody brush killer too, which contains Triclopyr.
  • The moderate persistent killer is Triclopyr, which can breakdown the stump if its applied concentration is less than 50 % within 60 days on the land.
  • If you want to allow one tree to grow from the old stump, you should cut the additional saplings and do not apply the herbicides on it.

Burning the stump

  • For the stump, removal burning is the effective method after killing it. Sometime beehive annoyed to much on trees. Get ride from beehive.
  • Use the drill machine to drill holes across the surface of the stump.
  • If you use the long drill bit, the holes should be at a 1.5-inch distance and 8 to 12 inches deep.
  • If the drilling is deep enough, it will burn the stump roots’ tips and make the process easier.
  • Now pour the kerosene oil into the stump so that it will burn into the ash.
  • The stump should be thoroughly saturated so that the fire can reach the roots.
  • Another method you can opt for is to use charcoal on top of the stump and light the charcoal on fire.
  • Throughout the stump, the coals will thoroughly burn down.
  • This method is useful in a way that the nearest plants will not be affected. If you have dog save plants from dog urine.
  • If you have other objects near you, do not use this method because it will be dangerous if you don’t have enough space around the stump.
  • Put the scrap wood on the top of the stump and use the fire starter.
  • AS the fire will start to burn, the stump will catch fire and die.
  • It depends on the stump size; the process can take several hours to complete.

Chopping the tree stump

  • You can kill the tree stump with the stump grinder too. 
  • The machine has a rotatory cutter that will grind the stump into two.
  • It is an effective method if the size of the stump is enormous.
  • You can rent a stump grinder, but it is good to buy one for your personal use if you have many stumps to remove.
  • Wear a protective mask so that the sawdust and flying woods may not get through into your eyes.
  • With the chain saw, level the stump a few inches from the ground.
  • Get rid of branches and roots so that the stump grinder may have enough space for operation.
  • Grind the Arial roots around the stump until it is fully broken down.

Learn More:

How to Kill a Tree Stump: FAQs

What can you put on a tree to make it rot?

Ideally, you should have a commercial fertilizer rich in nitrogen because it gives the fastest result, but cow manure is also useful. Another option is to use Epsom salt, a cost-effective option as a 19lbs page starts at $10.

Will bleach kill a tree stump?

Yes, bleach can kill a tree stump in a way that exposes the live stump by cutting it with a chain saw below where live branches are coming out. You can drill holes around the outer layers, but most tree killers will work without doing this. Put bleach into the stump or fill the gaps.

What is the best stump killer?

The following are the best stump killers.

  • 2.2 Spectra ide stump remover.
  • Gordon’s Stump killer ready to use.
  • 2.5 Southern Ag Brush Killer Stump Treatment.


To end the topic, how to kill a tree stump, I recommend that you have several options for removing tree stumps. That includesslow-release fertilizers that cause the slow decay of roots and mechanical methods, like cutting the roots; either of these methods can help kill the tree stumps. You can also choose Triclopyr, which is an effective chemical and easy-to-use product to kill tree stumps. No matter if you opt for which method, the essential tip for success is patience and careful follow-through.

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