Tree Stump Removed -- Planting Grass

urspider(7a - Baltimore)September 14, 2008

Just had a large tree removed and the stump ground to about a foot below ground level. What are my next steps for getting lawn to grow here? Can I just dump a bunch of top soil on and plant seed or do I need to wait a bit for teh ground to settle? Any other thoughts? Thanks.


Baffled in Baltimore

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andy10917(NY 6a)

If it was a substantial tree, the settling will continue for 5-8 years - you'll just have to deal with it. You'll have to deal with a mushrooms from time to time when the roots decay, especially if the tree was shallow-rooted.

Tamp down the topsoil you add and move on - you're gonna live with this for awhile, but it won't be that big a deal.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2008 at 10:39AM
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I have had several large trees removed and have planted successfully over the hole after the stump was chipped out. The fill dirt will settle ... as well as the area where any large roots are.

I always add some large rocks to the fill going in the hole to mitigate the eventual settling of the fill dirt. The rocks go in first then the fill.

Each spring a few more shovels of dirt may be necessary.

Mounding up the fill dirt might help a little but, you must remember where the "hump" is when you mow.

Matching the surrounding grass was always my pet peeve about filling tree holes. The patch of new grass is always a different color for a few years.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2008 at 2:22PM
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If the chips have not been removed, remove them and replace with soil. I once had a 85 foot norway spruce removed and had the stump ground. Grass took years to grow in that spot. I subsequently learned that those chips need to be broken down by microbes, which need a lot of nitrogen to do it. So the area was constantly starved for fertilizer.

So remove as many of those chips as you can! Then fill with non-enriched topsoil. Just pile those chips up somewhere not noticeable and they will become compost in a few years with zero effort on your part, or even sooner with some occasional turning of the pile.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   September 14, 2008 at 7:41PM
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Paulinct has some good points -- those wood chips not only will steal nitrogen but also will decay and cause a lot of the settling. If you remove as many of them as possible, fill with dirt, mound a bit, and seed, you should be in much better long run shape. If you don't compost the chips, just spread them around the garden/other trees like you would mulch.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2008 at 8:47PM
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Totally agree with Heimert.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2008 at 10:13PM
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