Cutting down a dead or dying tree is only one part of the removal process. In a home lawn, it is also necessary to remove the old stump that is left behind. The quickest and most thorough way to achieve this is with a stump grinder.
Stumps in a lawn can be problematic for many reasons. They are both unsightly and they can pose a pest hazard. Dead tree stumps can attract bothersome insect pests, such as termites, which can later make their way into your home. The old stump may also provide a burrowing site for animal pests, such as skunks, which will build dens beneath old rotting stumps.
There are also damage risks. Injuries can happen from tripping over a grass-obscured stump, for example. The stump can also be an obstacle for mowing and trimming the lawn, which increases the chances of damage to the equipment. Further, stumps can sometimes send up new and unwanted growth.
Grinding is a relatively simple process if one has the tools and skills. The size and style of the grinder depends on the size of the stump being removed. A stump grinder is used to grind the stump down well below the soil surface. Grinding does not remove all of the underground parts of the stump, just enough of it so it shouldn't pose any problems in the lawn.
The process does leave behind quite a bit of sawdust, along with a hole in the yard. Most services provide basic cleanup of the stump debris as part of the removal process, while others may renovate the landscaping afterward for a fee.
Some ongoing landscaping care is needed following stump removal in order to fully recover the site. Over time the remaining roots from the stump will rot, which can lead to the development of low areas in the lawn. These will need to be filled in with sifted compost to keep the lawn level.
Another issue is the old stump site itself. The soil can be depleted in this area, so planting a new tree isn't advisable. A better option is to add plenty of compost and topsoil. Either grow a lawn, knowing that the soil level will need to be replenished for several years, or put in an annual flower bed until the ground has time to stop settling from the stump removal.
Contact a stump grinding service to learn more about stump removal needs in your landscaping.