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Be honest with me now. I can take a bit of criticism

Do you think I've  pruned this   just a wee bit too  much??
I can take  it.

But seriously now  please. I would  like to ask  if anyone has any  ideas about removing the trunk AND more  importantly the roots which  have  made the  raised bed along side almost  impossible to dig  over.
The  main  of the trunk /rot system seems to be growing  all around  AND under the adjoining wall. Hope this is a bit clearer  in the  other  pix.
Many thanks. 


  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 77,491
    Not enough for me … 🪓 
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 27,628
    Normally I would advise to cut the trunk down to about 3'/90cm to give you a lever to wiggle the roots loose but since you have a cement board and wooden fence over half the roots that might not work so well.

    You're just going to have to scrape away the soil and cut the roots at the base of the trunk on the fence side and then wiggle the trunk to loosen the ones on your side of the fence and pull them up.   Don't worry about getting up every single bit of root, just the big ones.  In my experience conifer roots rot down fairly quickly.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,397
    Inclined to agree with Dove
  • raisingirlraisingirl East Devon, on the Edge of Exmoor.Posts: 5,573
    You can hire mini stump grinders. It's going to make a mess though. 
    Alternatively you can dig and chop and dig and chop and eventually you'll get right down to the tap root and saw though it. That'll take you a long time, most of which you'll spend upside down in a muddy hole.
    Neither option will be easy, the first is less physically challenging (but not without it's difficulties), the second will be cheaper.
    “Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first” 
  • detainerdetainer Posts: 13
    Many thanks. I take it all  on board and  just hope  i can do something. I assume that grinding the trunk wont get rid  of the root system  soo im thinking  i might as well  get the spade out and start dgging.

  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 27,628
    Yep, dig and cut as you find roots, especially the ones disappearing under that fence.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • UffUff SW Scotland but born in DerbyshirePosts: 1,740
    I'd do what raisingirl suggests after cutting down the stump, hack and chop but then I like a challenge. 
  • seacrowsseacrows Posts: 210
    Our front hedge had eight conifers about this size. If you leave about three foot of trunk you can use rope to pull/wobble loose the roots a little. Cut anything you can cut through, a small hand saw or pruning saw will be useful, as will a stiff brush. Don't try blasting the soil away with a pressure jet, moving wet soil is horrible and it may dry rock solid. It took us four months (weekends and evenings) to shift eight stumps, so pace yourself.

    If you want to replant that spot, bear in mind all the nutrients have been removed by the tree and you need to enrich the soil. Unless you're trying wildflowers.
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 31,692
    I'm clearly too lazy, I'd just cut it flush with soil level and let it rot. As has been said, it doesn't take that long
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 46,433
    I'd probably leave it too. By the time you top up the soil in the bed, you'll be able to plant around the stump, and it will rot reasonably quickly. 
    At the most, you'd get a decent amount of the root system out if you want to get stuck in with a bit of trunk as a lever, and maybe a saw for some bits and pieces of roots, but it depends how knackered you are and whether you've had your spinach  ;)

    Good job so far though @detainer - it'll give you a lot more scope for your plants  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

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