potassium nitrate vs stump grinder

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Old 07-22-19, 10:09 AM
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potassium nitrate vs stump grinder

We have a small area where we like our current shade tree. Unfortunately it is a plum (it came with the house) and the plums are making a mess.

We hope to replant with another tree after several months. Is a grinder stump removal better to use for future tree replanting or is potassium nitrate okay. Any new tree would have to be in almost the same location. Either way I know we'd have to wait to replant.

We would hire someone. A close by neighbor handyman said he could do it but would use potassium nitrate on the stump.

It's not a large tree...just a messy plum.
 
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Old 07-22-19, 10:44 AM
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If you intend to replant in the same spot I'd want to rip the stump/roots out of the ground. Stump grinding usually just removes what you can see along with a few inches below ground.
 
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Old 07-22-19, 11:16 AM
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I agree that removal is the best and requires an excavator, backhoe or a lot of labor. This way you are left with mostly clean soil for the new tree. The larger of the old tree's roots are removed and only the finer roots and misc. bits are left behind. This is also the most expensive type of removal. a bulk of the cost is transportation cost for the machines as the digging can be done rather quickly. Then there is disposal of the old roots which further adds to the cost.

Stump grinding only grinds down the stump at the surface. Bigger machines can grind deeper into the ground but 6-12" down is pretty common. It's a pretty inexpensive process as the machines are small and portable and the grinding usually takes only a few minutes. If going this route make sure to rake & shovel off all the grindings/sawdust and refill the hole with high quality topsoil. The roots/wood of the old tree is still shallowly buried below. This is sorta OK for plating grass but a new tree's roots will hit the old roots and have to go around. Not the best solution even for grass but worse for a tree that has deep roots.

Forget stump removal chemicals. While cheap they are all quite slow by comparison and not very thorough and will leave you with a lot of the roots still in the ground.
 
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Old 07-22-19, 02:12 PM
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Thanks, I may have my DIY neighbor cut down the old plum (it's not that big)...then hire a service to get the stump and roots out.
 
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Old 07-22-19, 02:22 PM
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Define not that big. Sometimes you can use the weight of the tree to uproot it [truck and chain]
 
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Old 07-22-19, 02:58 PM
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I have never removed roots from an old tree!

If it's small and you can rip all or some out great, otherwise dig down below grade level and cut it off and cover with dirt, the roots will just rot and not harm anything!
 
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Old 07-23-19, 04:16 AM
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The problem is if you try to plant another tree in the same spot before the old roots have decayed [takes yrs] it will restrict the root growth of the new tree.
 
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Old 07-23-19, 04:19 AM
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If you will have someone remove the roots consider that first. If you will be having someone stump grind then you can have your neighbor cut the tree down. If you are going to have the roots dug up and removed then leave 4 or 5' of the trunk standing above ground. The trunk will provide leverage and something for the machinery to grab onto.
 
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