Giant Tree Stump/ Roots

rastaman84July 18, 2014

Help!!! I've got this huge tree stump in my yard, & I need some ideas on what to do with it. Grinding it is out of the question. I would really like to take a chainsaw to the middle of it (passed the "stump steps") and carve out a pathway, fill with dirt & stepping stones. I want to keep the natural elements of it. Another idea is to possibly plant another tree in the middle of the hole. Any ideas would help out TREMENDOUSLY!!!

This post was edited by rastaman84 on Fri, Jul 18, 14 at 0:16

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rastaman84

Help!!! I've got this huge tree stump in my yard, & I need some ideas on what to do with it. Grinding it is out of the question. I would really like to take a chainsaw to the middle of it (passed the "stump steps") and carve out a pathway, fill with dirt & stepping stones. I want to keep the natural elements of it. Another idea is to possibly plant another tree in the middle of the hole. Any ideas would help out TREMENDOUSLY!!!

    Bookmark   July 18, 2014 at 12:21AM
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rastaman84

Anther photo of the character of this amazing stump...

    Bookmark   July 18, 2014 at 12:26AM
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catkim(San Diego 10/24)

Grow epiphytes on it.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2014 at 2:53AM
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shaxhome

What a beauty! Hopefully it came down before eating your house foundations and plumbing/drainage.

Why is grinding it "out of the question"?

Otherwise, agree with catkim. Some nice epiphytes would make a feature out of a problem, and be in keeping with your desire to keep the natural elements.

If you can, cut out a few chunks with your chainsaw/axe, plonk in some rich soil and leaf litter, start with some mosses and ferns and work outwards from there.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2014 at 8:32AM
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Ruth_MI(z5MI)

I'm curious - what kind of tree was it?

Also, what zone and location are you in? Looks (by plants) to be warm/tropical?

    Bookmark   July 18, 2014 at 9:42AM
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lazy_gardens

Use it for a dance floor?

Use the chain saw to gouge out the top into a shallow bowl shape that will hold water. then drill lots of holes down into the bowl, as deep as a wood bit and a good drill can go and fill them with ammonium nitrate fertilizer, then water them well. That speeds up the rotting.

Then fill it with potting soil and grow things.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2014 at 12:29PM
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littlebug5(z5 MO)

Holy cow! That really WAS a giant tree.

I agree - hollow it out in several places and then drill holes. Fill with dirt where you can and plant stuff. Repeat every year. It will gradually disintegrate.

I'll bet that grinding that stump out would be awfully expensive. I had one ground out that I thought was huge, but yours makes mine look tiny. Mine was only $125 to grind out.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2014 at 4:33PM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance

I wonder if a woodworker would pay you for slices of it. It could make some pretty cool looking coffee or end tables.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2014 at 5:10PM
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rastaman84

Wow, thank you all for your more than helpful feedback! Now, lets clear up a few of you questions...

Catkim: I love your idea for growing epiphytes. I could definitely invision this.

Shaxhome: This is actually a rental house, and it did fall on the house before I moved in. The house has been through hell, but the plumbing has been fixed, at least I've never encountered any problems with it... Grinding it would be just like littlebug5 says- very expensive, and a ton of time and work. Plus I would like to keep the features of the natural "steps" and rounded trunks.

Ruth_mi: I live in good ole' Cajun country-Lafayette, LA, and I believe the tree to have been an almost 400 year old oak. I heard it was beautiful.

To sum it all up, I think what I would like to do is leave the front "steps and side where my bedroom walkway is, but chainsaw chunks out of the center, fill with dirt, and lay stepping stones to be able to walk through. (There is a side yard on the right that I would like to get to.) Thank you guys so much!!!

    Bookmark   July 19, 2014 at 3:36PM
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marcinde(7)

You can rent a walk behind stump grinder for under $150 a day that would actually be the right tool for the job, and you'd be less likely to get hurt than you would if a chainsaw hit a rock and kicked back on you.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2014 at 1:43PM
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yardvaark

I'm coming to the partly late, but with a few ideas for the stump. One is based on berming the undercut portions of the stump and leaving the top exposed. Surround it with a moss-like plant (Irish/Scotch moss ... creeping thyme ... whatever is low and will prosper in the conditions.) The next is the same, but berm over the cut portions of the stump, too. The third is like the first, but use the cut portions of the stump to create a psychedelic (or whatever appeals) piece of painted art. Just for fun.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2014 at 10:38AM
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lazy_gardens

I think the idea of cutting a path, or at least making it possible to walk past the stump, by cutting through a few of the roots

Combine with the "berming and planting groundcover" and other plants over and around the rest of it.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2014 at 8:34AM
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rastaman84

Wow, yaardvark- I must say, very creative...And thank you so much for the drawings too! You rock! (not quite sure about the psychedelic one though- looks like an acid trip gone bad hahaha)

You and lazy gardens are both correct. I think i'll plant a tree where the hole is, plant ground cover, & make a pathway. Thanks a million everyone!!!!

This post was edited by rastaman84 on Wed, Jul 23, 14 at 23:31

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 11:23PM
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duluthinbloomz4

If you're going to go ahead with your plans of planting a tree in the stump, I might look for a tree you like but at a bargain basement price to make a possible failure less acute.

Will the hole provide adequate growing and rooting space/depth, and enough soil and minerals, drainage for rooting, and water and nutrient uptake? Will the new tree be stable enough to withstand being toppled in a breeze?

That stump really is a thing of beauty. Non-aggressive ferns, creeping ground cover patches, hens & chicks/ sempervivums here and there and you're good to go.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 12:00AM
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rastaman84

ok, well if i decide to not chainsaw any of this, how would i go about planting sempervivums or epiphytes directly onto the trunk? Maybe moss?

    Bookmark   July 27, 2014 at 10:10PM
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elysianfields(9b CA)

Its a gorgeous stump and a garden incorporated into it is a great idea. Mosses, succulents, adding a few container gardens in the recesses could all be done creatively. These are aeonium cuttings in the photo fixed into shallow recesses of a remnant wall that bordered a brick planter I knocked down and repurposed the bricks for a gravel path border. You could add some dimension with pebbles in the recesses, shells, polished beach glass so there's no sharp edges. It's very interesting how the roots evolved into organic shapes. Enjoy whatever you do end up doing with it.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2014 at 12:45AM
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