Tree Removal Techniques

Trees are desirable additions to most landscapes but occasionally a tree will become diseased, storm damaged or reach the end of its lifespan and die. Also, dense shade from large trees can inhibit the growth of grasses, flowers or other landscape plants. There are several different tree removal techniques used when removing trees, some with faster results than others.


Cutting a tree down is dangerous work for a person with little experience. You can hire someone to cut it down for you with the cost in relation to the size of the tree as well as where it is located. It costs more to remove a tree from a tight space or around utility lines than a tree with easy accessibility. You may also need to have the stump removed at additional cost unless you allow it to rot in the ground, which can take several years.


Girdling a tree involves cutting around the circumference of the tree with a chainsaw or ax deep enough to interrupt the flow of water and nutrients from the roots to the top of the tree. The tree slowly dies and then rots to pieces over time dropping limbs and perhaps even falling over in a high wind. This is a good technique to use if you have lots of trees that need to be killed over a large area of land. As the trees decay, they provide housing and food for birds when insects begin to invade the dead trees.


Bulldozing is pushing the trees over using a bulldozer. This will remove the roots of the tree in addition to all the top growth. The trees are then either buried in a big hole or burned. Bulldozing trees requires room for the bulldozer to work as well as knowing where underground utilities are located. Heavy bulldozers can crush sewer and water lines that are located close to the surface.


A variety of herbicides can be used to kill trees and allow them to decay naturally or be cut down in the future. Some herbicides are placed in the soil around the tree and are effective for large trees while other herbicides can be sprayed directly onto the foliage of the tree.

Keywords: getting rid of a tree, how to kill a tree, cutting down a tree

About this Author

Based in Rockdale Texas, Jim Gober has been writing garden-related articles for 25 years. His articles appear in several Texas newspapers including The Rockdale Reporter, The Lexington Leader, The Cameron Herald and The Hearne Democrat. He is a Master Gardener and Certified Texas Nursery and Landscape Professional. He holds bachelor degrees in English Writing from St. Edward's University and Finance from Lamar University.