Some Options for Removing A Stump


If you were a farmer 100 years ago wanting to get rid of a stump, you had few choices. You could hitch up your oxen and pull it out of the ground with chains. You could dig it out yourself, or possibly burn the stump. These options were back-breaking, exhausting, and often dangerous. They also took up valuable time.

It is unlikely that you need to clear your property in order to grow crops now, but you still may have some unsightly stumps you want removed. In a previous post, we’ve offered some compelling reasons to remove stumps if you’ve been putting it off.

We now have a few more efficient options when dealing with stumps than we did in centuries past. Here are some we can’t recommend, and one method we definitely can endorse:

1. Burn the Stump. We don’t recommend this. Most cities and municipalities have burn regulations in place for the safety of our homes and neighborhoods. This method is dangerous, not always completely effective, and probably illegal in many areas.

2. Dig it out By Hand. We can’t recommend this method unless it’s a very small stump and you have a few days to kill working on the project. It’s time-consuming, potentially dangerous, and messy. You may have to buy tools you don’t already own to do the project.

3. Use Chemicals to Increase Rot Speed. While this is an option, it usually involves toxic chemicals that aren’t safe for our ecosystem. The process can also be long and tedious. It may take months for your stump to break down completely, even after the treatment.

That brings us to the quickest, most economical, and safest option that Family Tree Care recommends. Call us to bring our stump grinder to do the job in just a few hours. 

Removing/grinding a stump is a difficult task if you don’t have the right equipment. Unless you have a team of oxen handy, this is one job best left to the professionals. International Society of Arboriculture (ISA)-qualified arborists should do the job.

Depending on the height and girth of the stump, the time to remove it will vary. Give Family Tree Care a call for a free estimate on the job. If you can send us a photo, the type of tree (if known) and measure the size of the stump across, that’s even better. We can give you a quick and fair estimate of the work. Unless you really enjoy the challenging of digging up your stump on your own, we’d love to give you a hand.

Jay Brock and Johnny Marth, Family Tree Care owners (Tacoma) are certified arborists. “We can quickly and safely remove any stumps on your property. When we’re done, I think you’ll wish you had called us sooner!”

For more information, visit their website at to complete a quick form to schedule a free estimate or contact Family Tree Care at (253) 234-GROW (4769).