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How to Remove Overgrown Foundation Shrubs

Ask This Old House landscape contractor Roger Cook helps a homeowner remove foundation shrubs that have overtaken the front of her house

Steps for Removing Overgrown Shrubs

  1. For plantings that have grown too large for the space, removal may be the best option, especially if the inside of the plant is full of deadwood.
  2. Before doing any landscape work, call the utility locating service to mark for any underground pipes or wires.
  3. When using a chainsaw, wear proper safety equipment including safety glasses, a face shield, a hard hat, hearing protection, and protective chaps.
  4. Cut away the shrubs using a chainsaw.
  5. Remove the debris using a brush shredder. A landscape contractor may come shred debris for a fee.
  6. Flush cut stumps and plant around them.


All of the tools and safety equipment used in the yew shrub removal can be found at a home center.