Stump Considerations

The desire to plant a new tree where another tree had been is an understandable one. The need to replace shade and privacy is essential. Planting near existing root systems, however, requires certain considerations.

For the new tree to thrive it is important that its roots be able to grow and establish themselves. While the roots of the dead tree will eventually decay, this process can take years. Unfortunately, no one can “see” into the ground in order to determine how extensive the root system is. The exact placement of the new tree will be determined when we begin digging the planting hole.

Please be aware of the following considerations before selecting a planting site for the new tree.

  • Stump grinding service companies will remove the tree and grind the stump. (Be aware that the standard depth of grinding is typically only 6″.)  In order for the new tree to be planted on the original site, the stump must be ground down completely through the root plate (typically 16-24”), along with any major roots within the planting area, before we come to plant.  The majority of the woody grindings must then be removed.  The remaining soil mix should contain no more than about 10%  of this organic matter.  Add enough topsoil to the planting site to make it level. Water the soil in to encourage it to settle. Add more topsoil if necessary.
  • If we are planting 10′ away from the stump, it is not necessary to grind down the stump at all. If you wish to have it ground down to plant grass or flowers, 6″ is sufficient. The wood chippings must be removed however, as they will rob the new planting of nitrogen.
  • If the caliper (diameter) of the trunk on the old tree was 6″ or larger, the new tree must be planted at least 10′ away from the stump.
  • If there are any major stump considerations, it would best for you to be available when we plant the tree so that you can address any concerns with the foreman. If you cannot be available, please mark a second location to plant the tree which is a minimum of 10′ away from your first choice.

While Stadler Nursery will do everything possible to plant your tree where you would like it planted, we must also consider the health of the tree. The further away from existing roots the new tree can be planted, the more quickly it will establish itself and thrive.

Please note that trees planted near old root systems generally require more water because there is less soil available to retain water.