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Old 10-21-2008, 06:44 PM
 
355 posts, read 839,182 times
Reputation: 318

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Boy, I've got all sorts of problems.

I've been spending a lot of time researching how to remove dead tree stumps and have thus far found a lot of interesting advice, but nothing sure fire. Now I have some very unique cases and situations, so not everything will work.

Here is the problem. There are about a dozen Eucalyptus tree stumps on my property of varying sizes, unfortunately when they were cut down, most were not taken down below 2-3 feet in height! A few of them are close to (if not surpassing) 3 feet in diameter.

I recently discovered that my carport has been severely damaged by termites, and am planning on having the structure torn down and rebuilt, possibly using the existing foundation and putting up a guest house/garage combo. One problem though, is that 2 of the extremely large tree stumps are right next to the garage, in a raised area that is about 5 feet wide and also bordered by the neighbor's fence. I don't want to leave food for termites close to the new structure that I eventually build. It's very hard to explain, basically, there is a 2 foot gap between the garage wall then a sheer cliff of about 6 feet with the stumps on top and sticking out the side of them, then on the other side of the stumps, the fence.

There is absolutely no way I can get a stump grinder in or up there, nor can I safely burn them out.

And I have been working on these stumps over the years manually and with chainsaws - going through lots of chainsaw blades due to the extremely hard wood (it's almost as if these stumps have petrified instead of breaking down over the years). I'm wondering if I should have a backhoe just try to uproot them once I tear down the garage structure, or should I try to slowly rot them away using the nitrogen based fertilizer method?

I have a few other ones that have been covered/overgrown by ivy...they seem to be decaying at a much better rate - should I just leave these other than continue to put a little extra water on them to speed up the process?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 11-03-2008, 05:50 PM
 
355 posts, read 839,182 times
Reputation: 318
Hmmm, well no one has any ideas. Here are a couple of pics of the tree stumps in question. Perhaps someone has some good advice...


http://i126.photobucket.com/albums/p104/karkyco/Snapfish021.jpg (broken link)


http://i126.photobucket.com/albums/p104/karkyco/Snapfish022.jpg (broken link)



http://i126.photobucket.com/albums/p104/karkyco/Snapfish023.jpg (broken link)
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Old 11-04-2008, 07:29 PM
 
46 posts, read 89,843 times
Reputation: 32
Boy you do have a problem

From the looks of the second pic the roots have probably grown under your neighbor's fence. It looks to me that if you were to take a backhoe to the stumps, the fence is likely to come down too. Those stumps may be holding that bank the fence is built on.
Chemicals might be your only answer, that is going to take some time. Cut them as close to the ground as you can and spray or drill.
Where I work we use Garlon to spray trees and stumps. I don't know where you can get it. I have heard about drilling holes and putting salt in them, never tried it but I will, I have a small stump in my backyard I need to it rid of.

Sorry not much help
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Old 11-04-2008, 10:53 PM
 
4,285 posts, read 10,371,229 times
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Interesting.

One assumes that if you're rebuilding, any wood used will have been treated to be termite resistant.

While it's not unreasonable to be concerned that the old stumps may be harbouring termites, it's also possible the wooden fence could be infested. Might just be best to build with treated wood and use a termite control product to protect your buildings.

Any attempt to remove the stumps with a back-hoe is just going to result in damage to the bank and fence. It will also de-stabilize the bank.

I'd be inclined to cut the stumps near ground level when the old building was removed and then plant some sort of ground cover to hide the remains.
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Old 11-05-2008, 10:20 AM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
11,748 posts, read 27,321,510 times
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Cornerguy1 has it right, I think. You are looking at an expensive job. Rip out the existing structure, probably including the foundation. Use a big backhoe to free up the stumps (it'll take a 610) and pull out the bank and fence. Build a proper retaining wall and fence on top of that. You'll need the cooperation of the neighbor and probably some permits. Going after the stumps with a chainsaw is like attacking them with a toothpick. If you don't remove the roots you'll have bug problems, if you do, you have to restabilize the bank.
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Old 11-05-2008, 06:17 PM
 
19,770 posts, read 15,190,912 times
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Rip the stumps out and loose the bank. Or have to install a retaining wall. I can see why a stump grinder would not work there.
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Old 11-05-2008, 06:41 PM
 
Location: Santa saw your Facebook pictures. Youre getting clothes and a Bible for Christmas.
1,837 posts, read 3,705,121 times
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Just a thought. I cant see the rest of your lot so this might not work. When you build your garage/guest house could you do it like a bank barn. That way you could get rid of the tree stumps and the bank. And you would have a nice big storage area under the garage. .

Also are you sure you can build a new structure. Thats awful close to the lot line. Sometimes old stuff is grandfathered but new stuff has to follow the new rules for set backs etc.
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Old 11-06-2008, 06:55 AM
 
Location: Knoxville
3,350 posts, read 10,920,412 times
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I like the idea of making a retaining wall into a wall of the garage.
Another thought. Cut what you can, then get a termite company to treat the area. BUild the garage out of pressure treated lumber, and keep an eye on it for future infestations.
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Old 11-10-2008, 06:42 PM
 
355 posts, read 839,182 times
Reputation: 318
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimeez View Post
Boy you do have a problem

From the looks of the second pic the roots have probably grown under your neighbor's fence. It looks to me that if you were to take a backhoe to the stumps, the fence is likely to come down too. Those stumps may be holding that bank the fence is built on.
Chemicals might be your only answer, that is going to take some time. Cut them as close to the ground as you can and spray or drill.
Where I work we use Garlon to spray trees and stumps. I don't know where you can get it. I have heard about drilling holes and putting salt in them, never tried it but I will, I have a small stump in my backyard I need to it rid of.

Sorry not much help
Oh you're definitely right. I've already spent way too much time (and chainsaw, chainsaw blades, and bars) cutting into the smaller stump. I'm going to try and cut them as close to the ground as possible, but after this many years of drying, these things get HARD, almost like they're petrified. If I can just get them down to the top of that slope, I think I will have more options.

Definitely if I use a backhoe, which would be impossible to get in there without destroying the garage, it would tear up that fence and probably a big chunk of the neighbor's back yard. Thanks everyone for the suggestions...
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Old 11-10-2008, 06:53 PM
 
355 posts, read 839,182 times
Reputation: 318
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cecilia_Rose View Post
Just a thought. I cant see the rest of your lot so this might not work. When you build your garage/guest house could you do it like a bank barn. That way you could get rid of the tree stumps and the bank. And you would have a nice big storage area under the garage. .

Also are you sure you can build a new structure. Thats awful close to the lot line. Sometimes old stuff is grandfathered but new stuff has to follow the new rules for set backs etc.
Not sure - I'm still in the very early planning phase and will have to find out what is possible, you are more than likely right because the garage is within 5 feet of the property line of both that side neighbor and the rear neighbor...but anything I do would involve having to deal with those stumps, so I figured I'd see if any of you creative folks could help.

I like your idea though I'm not exactly sure what a bank barn is, I'm guessing you mean build right up to the bank and over it, perhaps cutting the trees to be flat with the top of the slope and building on top - is that what you mean?

No matter what I build you guys are right - it definitely needs to be treated because the termites are rampant. I'm sure the fence already has them, but it's the neighbor's so it's generally their problem. But those stumps, even after all this time (at least 10 years being "dead" - no more shoots), are still extremely hard.
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