A lot of people are dismayed by the stumps that remain after trees are removed from their property. Stumps are unsightly, take up valuable space, and can cause tripping hazards. Many homeowners choose to have their stumps ground down, which can be a cheaper and easier option than removing the stump entirely with a chainsaw. However, stump grinding can also be messy, leaving a large hole and wood chips scattered around the yard.
To make this project as low-stress as possible, Burke advises first-time grinder users to take several factors into account before renting Stump grinding West Chester PA a machine and embarking on the process. First, he says, it’s important to consider the size of the stump to ensure that the rented machine will be powerful enough. Most grinders available for rent at hardware stores aren’t designed to handle the size of a stump or spread out surface roots, which may extend more than six inches below the soil line. It’s also important to check for buried utilities before starting the project.
Burke recommends calling 811 to have all underground lines marked before beginning work. This is especially important if the stump will be near major buildings or if it’s in an area where it could interfere with lawn sprinklers, gas lines, sewer lines, or electricity cables. It’s also a good idea to have safety barricades set up, as well as protective clothing and eyewear for the operators.
Once all the safety precautions are taken, the actual grinding can begin. Using the hydraulic lever to raise the grinder wheel, Burke suggests working slowly and chipping away at the stump. It’s important to remove any rocks that are found on top of the stump before grinding, as they can damage the machinery. It’s also important to be mindful of the surrounding plants, as a kick up from the grinder can destroy or ruin any new growth.
Some species of tree, like crape myrtles and Chinaberry, can sprout shoots from the roots left below the ground even after a stump is ground. If they’re not trimmed or mowed down, these shoots can be very difficult to get rid of and can cause significant landscaping challenges. Commercially-available woody stump killer can be used to help speed up the decay process, which will eliminate these unwanted sprouts.
Lastly, it’s important to rake up the wood chips left behind once the grinding is complete and reshape the resulting crater. If the crater isn’t filled, it could become a tripping hazard and invite unwanted insects into the yard.
Stump grinding isn’t the only solution for getting rid of an old tree stump, but it is one of the easiest and most cost-effective options. If you’re ready to ditch the eyesore and give your landscape a fresh new look, call us for a quote. We’re happy to help!