Kill Tree Roots

Okay, here’s one topic thats a bit different, I had a large tree cut down the other day, its a soft maple and of course the large roots are showing in the yard. I want to kill these roots before removing (grinding out) the stump. Any idea on what products are out there to kill the roots off and any helpful suggestions would be most appreciated…thanks

P.S. None of the roots are in the plumbing waste pipes…

Before you grind the stump bore a few holes in the top, and put in some rock salt.


Here are a few ideas…

Eliminate the light source… foliage needs to grow. Thick black plastic and mulch over the stump, carpet etc … blocks the light source

Caustic Soda (Sodium Hydroxide) solution will kill out the tree stump. Caustic Soda should be available at any hardware/paint shop. Make a solution (1 part caustic soda + 2 parts water) and pour the solution over the tree stump. It may be necessary to apply the solution three-four times before the tree stump is completely removed.

Digging around to expose all the major roots and the stump, then using a chainsaw or axe to cut these roots can help in either case.

Just keep drilling holes. When there is nothing left to drill, the stumps will decay quickly.

Use Herbicides (Root killers) with Caution. Herbicides are sold at Garden Centers / Hardware Stores / Wal-mart etc. They also sell a ‘Store Brand’ which is cheaper, but basically the same.

Home Depot has a product for killing tree roots it is kept in the plumbing section here in Canada. you can put it down the drain to get those roots .
Yes it is strong and caustic. .
If you can not get a stump grinder in *( this takes longer but works well ) .
Charcoal brickets on the stump some every day and good by stump.
Soft maple we call it boxwood elder if you get shoots coming up then wait a couple of days till the leaves come out and Round up will do the job and not near so caustic.
I like the round up short life sun Kills the action .

It’s getting harder and harder to find. I had a hard time a while back. I use it as a degreaser. It is one of the prime ingrediants for meth labs, so it’s getting pretty hard to come by for common folk. I found mine marketed as ‘Rooto Quality Household Drain Opener’.

Drill the holes and use Diesel fuel it works for stumps and Fire ants, just do not let anyone catch you doing it.:wink:

Thanks Guys, I appreciate the information…

With a little digging and the right quantity, diesel will work on carpenter ants and termites, too. As Todd says, don’t get caught!

Last month I ground down several stumps in my yard, 2 were approx. 2’-3’ dia. from an oak and a silver maple. I too had some roots showing, so I used the grinder to take them out. To me it was quicker and eliminated the concern of using caustic chems around the family pets and grandkids, just be careful of rocks.