How to Eradicate Cedar Trees


Many types of trees provide beauty, shade and function, but some trees are undesirable in pastures, yards and parks. Cedar trees, woody species that grow easily from seeds disbursed by wind, birds and small animals, can create difficulties for landowners. Removing and eliminating future growth allows room for livestock grazing and landscape enhancements.

Step 1

Cut mature trees using mechanical means such as a tree saw or chain saw to cut large trunks just below the lowest branches. Prune below these areas of green growth to discourage new sprouts from forming on the remaining portion of the trunk. Pull up smaller specimens with a tractor blade or bush hog attachment. Run the implement over the soil numerous times to pull small cedar trees out by their roots.

Step 2

Burn off the cedar trees and pile removed sections into a location away from surrounding structures. Obtain verbal permission or a burn permit from your local fire department or other government agency in charge of prescribed burns. Avoid burning during high winds or after heavy rains. Strictly adhere to local regulations for burning brush on private land.

Step 3

Scrape away any debris remaining after your prescribed burn by using your tractor blade or bush hog. Treat cleared soil with a chemical herbicide formulated to remove cedar growth. Follow all instructions included with the herbicide. Take necessary precautions such as wearing protective clothing, gloves, masks and eyewear when applying strong herbicides. Avoid spraying herbicides during windy conditions.

Step 4

Reclaim the soil by planting aggressive groundcover and grass seed. Put out livestock for grazing or perform annual harvesting to continue eradicating small specimens. Check your ground for the appearance of new cedar seedlings and pull up before they begin to grow and mature.

Tips and Warnings

  • Use extreme caution when using chemicals to start a prescribed burn.

Things You'll Need

  • Tree saw or chain saw
  • Tractor blade or bush hog
  • Chemical herbicide
  • Groundcover or grass seed


  • Iowa State University: Eastern Red Cedar Control
  • Oklahoma Department of Wildlife: Cedar Removal
  • Texas A&M University: How to Master Cedar
Keywords: cedar removal, eradicate cedars, tree removal

About this Author

Laura Dee is a writer, artist, and the co-owner of Wallace & Wallace Copywriting,an online business which specializes in providing marketing materials and copy to various companies. She has written for Demand Studios since 2008 and is currently working on a series of childrens' picture books.