The Pros and Cons to Burning a Tree Stump

After you take down tree, you’re bound to have a tree stump. Many tree stumps can be incorporated into a property’s lawn as a decorative feature, or even a functional asset, perhaps for bird houses or hammocks. However, many people want to get rid of the tree trunk completely, whether for new construction projects or for aesthetic curb appeal. Although there are many methods to getting rid of a tree stump, from stump grinding to full root stump removal, many homeowners are curious about a method that falls somewhere in between, known as stump burning. But before you grabbed some matches and a lighter, be sure you know what you need to know about burning a tree stump.

Continue reading to learn the basics to stump burning, including a review of the common pros and cons.

Fishers Tree Stump Removal 317-537-9770
Fishers Tree Stump Removal 317-537-9770

Stump Burning Basics

Most people assume stump burning involves lighting a tree stump on fire. In reality, stump burning requires a two-step process involving potassium nitrate or saltpeter, as well as a small controlled fire. Within the two-step process, the stump must also be cut at a certain angle, and several holes must be bored in the center of the trunk. From there, potassium nitrate and hot water are added, and once the substance has fully dissolved within the trunk, a small controlled fire is set on top.

But what about the legalities surrounding stump burning? Are there penalties for burning your tree stump without a particular certification or permit? Or is it perfectly legal to burn a tree stump on your property? Well, Indiana does have active open burning regulations that decrees trash burning against the law, typically forbidding all forms of open burning. However, there are exempt burning activities. One such exemption is agricultural maintenance burning. (IC) 13-17-9-1 and Open Burning Rule 326 IAC 4-1

So, stump burning is legal so long as you’re doing so on your own personal property. But does this mean you should do it? Here are the top pros and cons discussed among homeowners who’ve tried in the past.

✅ Pros

Tree stump burning is legal in Indiana, but always check with your local fire department first before beginning a project on your property. The most admired advantage to getting rid of a tree stump by burning practices is its efficiency and convenience. The materials you need to do so are available at your local home improvement store, or sometimes even in your own garage. For those who are familiar with setting fires and controlling fires, burning a tree stump could be very simple to do. For those who are not familiar with working with fire, it is strongly encouraged to not attempt tree stump burning on your own.

⛔ Cons

One of the most common and talked-about disadvantages to burning a tree stump is the low oxygen burn phenomenon. You see, tree stumps that are deep within the ground typically do not get enough oxygen exposure to support a fire. And even if they do support a fire, that fire is not likely to make any sort of notable difference in removing the tree stump from the lawn. Most often, in low oxygen burn environments, rather than eliminating the tree trunk, a charcoal material is produced in its place, which is usually impossible to get rid of.

Professional Stump Removal and Tree Service in Fishers, Indiana

Call 317-537-9770 for year-round tree care service and stump removal in Fishers, Indiana. We are highly trained and experienced tree care contractors that offer a wide range of residential and commercial tree services at competitive prices. We also offer tree service coupons and discounts! Request a free estimate, today.

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