Is It Better to Grind or Remove a Tree Stump?

Is It Better to Grind or Remove a Tree Stump?

Perhaps a tree fell in your yard during a storm, you cut a tree down because it was falling ill, you needed to make space for another structure, or you just wanted to bring in more light. Whatever the case may be, the tree may be gone, but a stump is left behind – and you’re left with a dilemma. What is the best way to get rid of the tree stump? Should you grind the tree stump or remove it completely?

Is It Better to Grind or Remove a Tree Stump?

There’s no question about it – getting rid of left-behind tree stumps is a must. Tree stumps can be a serious hazard, and they can usher in unwanted pests and diseases that can infect other plant life. Not to mention, tree stumps stick out like sore thumbs and detract from the aesthetic appeal of the landscape.

When it comes to getting rid of tree stumps, you have two basic options: stump removal or stump grinding. A reputable tree service in your area will offer both options, so it’s up to you to decide which one is the best choice for tree stumps in your yard. Below, you’ll find an overview of both options so you can decide the best option for your situation.

Tree Stump Grinding vs Tree Stump Removal: What’s the Difference?

In order to determine which option will work best for you, you first need to understand the difference between stump grinding and stump removal. Many people assume that they’re the same thing, but there are distinct differences between the two stump removal methods. Let’s take a look.

Stump Grinding

Stump grinding refers to the removal of a tree stump without removing the roots from the ground. Rather than digging up the stump, specialized heavy machinery (stump grinder) is used to grind the stump down to ground level, a few inches deep.

When you hire a professional tree service, stump grinding is a lot easier and doesn’t require as much effort as stump removal, and the risk of damage to your party is much lower. One major downfall of stump grinding is that the roots are left behind, and there’s a chance that they could continue growing and spread throughout the rest of your yard. Additionally, stump grinding can take a while. Depending on the size of the tree stump, it can take weeks to complete the process.

Stump Removal

Stump removal refers to the process of removing the entire tree stump (roots and all). A tree’s root system can be large, and complex, and it can be buried deep under the ground. With stump removal, experienced arborists utilize specialized equipment to dig the tree stump and the entire root system out of the ground and remove it from your property. When the job is done, the only thing that will be left behind is a patch of dirt where the stump used to be (as well as any soil that was displaced during the digging process).

On the plus side, with stump removal, you won’t have to worry about any renegade roots growing and taking over your yard. On the downside, it’s a much more complex process than stump grinding, and depending on the extent of the root system, there’s a chance that your property could sustain some damage.

Additionally, with stump removal, you will need to abide by specific laws and regulations, which, depending on where you live, can be rigorous. In some areas, you may need to obtain special permits (which require a fee and have to be approved), and follow specific steps in order to remove a tree stump and roots.

Stump Grinding vs Stump Removal: Pros and Cons

Now that you know the difference between stump grinding and stump removal, let’s take a look at the pros and cons of each option.

Stump Grinding

Pros
  • Easier process
  • Not as invasive to your yard
  • No holes left to deal with
  • Less expensive than stump removal
Cons
  • Tree roots can continue growing and eventually sprout
  • Roots could decay, which can result in an uneven yard
  • Can sometimes take longer than stump removal

Stump Removal

Pros
  • Eliminates the stump and the entire root system
  • No sawdust to contend with
  • Easier to landscape the area where the tree was
Cons
  • More invasive
  • Abiding by stringent regulations may be necessary (permitting, etc.)
  • Greater possibility of damaging your property
  • More costly

What’s the Best Option?

Whether you should grind or remove a tree stump really depends on your specific situation and needs. Given the fact that the entire root system is eliminated, removal is the preferred method for eliminating tree stumps. However, if you don’t want to contend with complicated regulations and you’re on a strict budget, stump grinding is the better option.

Need stump removal in Omaha? Learn more

Tree Services of Omaha

Tree Services of Omaha, Nebraska is a full-service tree care provider that offers a wide range of arborist services including but not limited to: Tree Removal Services, Tree Trimming, Tree Pruning, Tree and Shrub Shaping, Stump Removal, Stump Grinding, Arborist Consultations, Systemic Tree Injections.

Contact us today for a free estimate!