Tree Removal Process


Tree removal is no small matter. Whether the decision to take out a tree is based on safety or aesthetic reasons, there are a number of issues which must be addressed. Tree extraction can be expensive, time consuming and dangerous. Before making the choice to go it alone, visually inspect the tree in question. If there is even a remote possibility of the tree falling into a nearby building or utility line, do not attempt to remove it yourself, as the repairs will more than likely cost more than hiring tree removal professionals.

Step 1

Observe the natural inclination of the tree. The natural lean of the trunk is the most obvious choice for the direction of the fall. Once you have determined the direction in which the tree will fall, plan two different routes of escape in case the tree takes an unexpected route to the ground.

Step 2

Don the necessary protective gear prior to beginning work: safety goggles, long sleeved shirt, long pants, closed-toed shoes and work gloves.

Step 3

Use a chainsaw to remove the tree's lower branches, leaving stubs extending from the main trunk of the tree. Climb the tree, removing branches as you go.

Step 4

Remove the top portion of the tree. Use the stubs as foot or hand-holds and make your way back down the tree, removing pieces of the main trunk as you go, until you have a tree base that is a manageable size for felling.

Step 5

Cut a wedge of tree from the side on which you'd like the trunk to fall. Move to the opposite side of the tree and begin cutting a wedge from the other side. Stop cutting when there are a few inches of wood left between the two cuts and push the trunk in the desired direction.

Step 6

Dig around the edges of the stump to expose the main roots of the tree. Using a high pressure nozzle and a garden hose, spray the tree roots to soften the tissues and remove any excess dirt.

Step 7

Cut through all of the main roots surrounding the stump with a sharpened ax. Once the roots have been severed, tie a strong rope or chain around the stump. Hold the other end and use your body weight to pull the stump. If the stump is too large or you are too light, tie the other end of the rope around your car or truck bumper and use the vehicle to pull the stump from the ground.

Things You'll Need

  • Protective clothing
  • Chainsaw
  • Axe
  • Shovel
  • Garden hose
  • Hose pressure nozzle
  • Rope or chain


  • Grounds Maintenance: How to Safely Remove a Tree
  • House and Garden: How to Remove a Tree Stump
  • DIY Network: How to Remove a Tree
Keywords: tree removal, get rid of a tree, stump removal

About this Author

Lisa Parris writes on a wide variety of topics, but focuses on health and wellness. First published in Stone Soup at the age of 7, Parris's work has also appeared in the Journal of Comparative Parasitology and The Monterey County Herald. She holds a Bachelor's Degree in biology and attended medical school for one year before admitting she "didn't have the stomach for it".