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How to Remove a Tree Stump

In this how-to video, This Old House landscape contractor Roger Cook shows how to grind away an old stump

In this video, landscape contractor Roger Cook discusses how to remove a tree stump.


1 Use shovel to dig out any rocks from around the tree stump.
2 Start up the stump grinder and drive it close to the stump.
3 Raise the grinder's cutting wheel slightly above the stump.
4 Drive grinder forward a few inches, then lower its spinning cutting wheel into stump.
5 Using the machine's controls, swing cutting wheel from side to side, slowly nibbling away at stump.
6 Lower the cutting wheel a couple inches, and grind away some more of the stump.
7 Repeat this procedure until the grinder has removed the stump 6 inches below grade.
8 Raise the cutting wheel, advance the grinder forward a few inches, then lower the spinning wheel into the stump.
9 Continue to grind down the stump, and then advance forward until the entire stump has been removed to a depth of 6 inches.
10 Rake up all the wood chips.
11 Fill the stump hole with screened topsoil.
12 Spread grass seed over the topsoil.
13 Lightly rake the seed into the soil and water.
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