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I have a ton of pine stumps. Range is 8" - 20" in diameter. I have a stump grinder (small portable one) that I use for hardwoods. The pine stumps take forever to grind. We have some area that we want to plant in eventually small gardens and surface plants.

Because I can't pull or bulldoze the pine stumps out, what would be more effective? Grinding the stumps below grade as much as possible? Or dig up around the stumps and try and use a saw to cut as many roots/stump and rebury?

With grinding, I can only get about 6" below grade and would take an hour or more per stump depending on the size. Not to mention the teeth going dull fast! A set of teeth is about 150$ and can not be sharpened.

With burying the stumps, I would have to dig out a ton of dirt because some roots are a couple feet or more below the soil. I would use a reciprocating saw and/or chainsaw to cut it as much below grade as possible. The idea of both of these methods is to allow them to naturally rot below the surface.

I am open to any input or other methods!! Again, I don't have the funds or ability to get a bulldozer or excavator to dig them out, even though I wanted to, it's just not economically feasible in my area. Looking at almost $1200 a day for rental of just the machines!
 

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Wow, $1200 a day! About 17 years back I hired a dozer (with driver) for a few hours work for a few hundred dollars.

Find a neighbor with a good stout tractor maybe?
 
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If you have a tractor, you could use a backhoe or, my preference, a stump bucket. Good luck.
 

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Yeah, most of my neighbors are Amish. The others have old Ford tractors. My Kubota lx2610 can’t pull the pines out. They are very deep. They are “depression” era pines. They were about 80ft tall when we had them removed and the rows of stumps left behind are crazy.
 

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I have a ton of pine stumps. Range is 8" - 20" in diameter. I have a stump grinder (small portable one) that I use for hardwoods. The pine stumps take forever to grind. We have some area that we want to plant in eventually small gardens and surface plants.

Because I can't pull or bulldoze the pine stumps out, what would be more effective? Grinding the stumps below grade as much as possible? Or dig up around the stumps and try and use a saw to cut as many roots/stump and rebury?

With grinding, I can only get about 6" below grade and would take an hour or more per stump depending on the size. Not to mention the teeth going dull fast! A set of teeth is about 150$ and can not be sharpened.

With burying the stumps, I would have to dig out a ton of dirt because some roots are a couple feet or more below the soil. I would use a reciprocating saw and/or chainsaw to cut it as much below grade as possible. The idea of both of these methods is to allow them to naturally rot below the surface.

I am open to any input or other methods!! Again, I don't have the funds or ability to get a bulldozer or excavator to dig them out, even though I wanted to, it's just not economically feasible in my area. Looking at almost $1200 a day for rental of just the machines!
I always liked to pile chicken poop up around the base of stumps of trees that had been cleared for the garden and when it rotted, worked away at whatever was remaining. Stumps gone within a year, and these were 22-24" pine stumps, smaller ones should go faster
 

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How many stumps?
What stump grinder do you have that takes an hour?
I have a 15hp toro that would do each in 20 mins...
If a vegetable garden planned I’d find a way to get them pulled or pushed over.
Planting shrubs or trees? I’d leave the roots in the ground and plant around them.
 

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Both ways are going to be slow and dull thing quickly.

with a backhoe digging them out is cool. Withhand tools and a chainsaw I would not want to do this.

I would go with the stumpgrinder.

but look into renting a backhoe or excavator...... that would be the real deal and et you done. Time is money.

Paul
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Do you by chance have a loader on your tractor?
Yes, we have a loader

Burn them???
I’ve thought about this, but how exactly do I do this? I’ve seen people using barrels, but I don’t have a barrel to use. And with gas, etc. it would burn off too quickly to keep the stumps lit. These are also FRESH stumps, very sappy and only cut this summer.

How many stumps?
What stump grinder do you have that takes an hour?
I have a 15hp toro that would do each in 20 mins...
If a vegetable garden planned I’d find a way to get them pulled or pushed over.
Planting shrubs or trees? I’d leave the roots in the ground and plant around them.
We will be planting both. Trees in one area which we aren’t worried about the pine stumps. The garden area we have maybe 30 stumps left to remove.
The stump grinder is a DR Premier (6.6hp). It grinds anything really well. The reason it takes so long is that pine rips and shreds. The pines are also freshly cut from the summer. They are not old and seasoned stumps.
 

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I saw a guy drill holes in a stump and then fill the hole with oil. He repeated it over a month or 2 as the oil soaked into the stump. Then he lit the oil and let it burn away the stump. I would try that and maybe put a circle of tin around the stump to redirect the heat back to the stump.
 
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If you burn them, remember they have roots that tunnel through the ground for quite a distance. Fire will travel underground for quite a distance if it has fuel and oxygen. You might end up putting out grass fires for days. Been there, done that, got the t-shirt singed trying to put out grass fires.

I would put flower pots on top of the stumps or pile soil around the stumps and plant vining crops in that.
 

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Posted 11/22/20 105 AM CST

When I have stumps to get rid of I put wood ash on the stump and cover it with grass clippings or barn straw and add water to start it until the dew and rain keeps the ash leeching lye into the stump to rot it out in 5 or 6 months .Pine stumps rot away faster than hardwood or brush stumps for me.
 

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Posted 11/22/20 105 AM CST

When I have stumps to get rid of I put wood ash on the stump and cover it with grass clippings or barn straw and add water to start it until the dew and rain keeps the ash leeching lye into the stump to rot it out in 5 or 6 months .Pine stumps rot away faster than hardwood or brush stumps for me.
That's just as good an idea as chicken poop!
 

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Dog a trench around the stump. The idea is to burn the stump from the bottom up. Then put a burn barrel over it .
 

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Burning leaves you with fire-hardened sharp sticks poking out of the ground. Perfect for impaling yourself on. Been there and done that.
 

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If you had hogs you might be able to get them to dig up the stumps by using a post hole digger to dig holes around the stump and adding corn to the holes.
 

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I saw a guy drill holes in a stump and then fill the hole with oil. He repeated it over a month or 2 as the oil soaked into the stump. Then he lit the oil and let it burn away the stump. I would try that and maybe put a circle of tin around the stump to redirect the heat back to the stump.
I've used a method pretty close to this. I used pieces of the tree that was cut down to build a fire over the stump. I had old 55 gallon drum that I cut up to make a fire ring.

This year I had to cut down a few pines. When I got them down I used an old chain saw chain and cut straight down into the stump about a foot forming an x.I intend to put some manure over the stump. We'll see how it goes.
 

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I saw a guy drill holes in a stump and then fill the hole with oil. He repeated it over a month or 2 as the oil soaked into the stump. Then he lit the oil and let it burn away the stump. I would try that and maybe put a circle of tin around the stump to redirect the heat back to the stump.
I’ve done this. Put a few bricks or flat rocks to keep the tin up off but close to the ground. I had a small barrel with both ends cut out. What you want is to get the “ chimney effect” going so it blowtorches. It’s slow and burns for hours. Mine went down to just below ground level. You still have the roots there for years though.
Do you know anyone with tractor that has a subframe backhoe ? You don’t need a monster like the highway crews use just a 35 hp tractor 4 WD will do. Mine is 36 with a MF 20 16” backhoe. I’ve dug a lot of 6-16” trees up and it’s easy. Bigger monsters are a pain but doable just takes tim and being able to get at from at least 3 sides.
If you have any neighbors with a rig like mine ya might be able to swing a deal. Digging with a hoe is fun and most farm n ranch owners don’t get much use from their $9000 toy so doing a few small obs can help offset the cost . Ask around ya never know. At least for the ones you need gone “ right now”.
 
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