Mattock?

Is this what I need? I can clip/prune/lop intrusive seedling(!) trees and whatnot, but I keep stepping on 2" tall stubs (and the devils keep sprouting from the 'stump'). Should I invest in a mattock (or some other digging tool) to whack these suckers slightly below-ground? I really don't have the energy or strength to dig up the entire root mass. And at this point, creating divots in my back yard "lawn" is the least of my worries.
If a mattock seems appropriate, any recommendations for something sturdy enough to do the job? I've just looked at a couple of web sites and see a 36", 5lb gadget (TrueTemper). I think, perhaps, something with a longer handle and more weight might require less total effort.
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I could never tell the difference between a mattock and a maul, but I once used an axe (30" haft) break apart a 2-3 inch diameter stump and sever some main roots. Then I pried it out with the wide curved end of a maul (or mattock?). If you paulbunyan the stump with the axe, I suppose you don't need the maul and can just pick the pieces out.
wear safety glasses and keep away from toes, of course.
-- Salty
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Bill Ranseen wrote:

Tossing in a couple of cents here...
A small hand-mattock is great for planting. It beats the hell out of a trowel. Instead of shoveling a small hole, you use the mattock to more-or-less scoop-out enough soil for your hole in one smooth, repeated motion. And if you encounter small roots while planting, you don't even need to change tools. If you don't already have a hand-sized mattock, run out and buy one today.
As far as the original question about chopping off the stubs of little tree already mowed-down (or even not yet mowed down), if you don't mind the divots in the lawn, sure, a mattock will work. Unless you have so many of these mini-trees to chop that you don't even want to think about kneeling down and using a hand-sized mattock, I'd go for the hand-sized mattock instead of spending the money on a larger sized one that you may not get much use out of. You'll also be able to take smaller, more focused divots that you'll be able to replace as well.
--
Warren H.

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On Sun, 20 Jul 2003 17:44:40 GMT, Salty Thumb

'sOK. Given today's weather (H&H) I'm inclined to let the dratted treelings become a forest anyhow. I had a small axe once, but yard-saled it after I split my knee open trying to make kindling. I wonder -- do woodchucks actually eat wood? I could get one and put it in an open-bottomed cage and just move it around the lawn. :-)
I think a mattock may be what I need. These 'stumps' are 1/4" to 1/2" in diameter. Mostly. If I could get 'em with a couple of whacks, I'd be happy.
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Not sure what you're describing, tho side 2 is mattock-like. It also sounds a bit like an old shipbuilders adze. There are quite a few configurations for these tools and there used to be a lot more versions available, like for railroad building.

For me, an axe-mattock is the tool of choice for grubbing out stumps. It's hard work, requires practice to swing the tool accurately and with force, and it's potentially dangerous: Rule #1: Never aim the thing anywhere near any body parts (and be aware of possible repercussions if it bounces off what you hit). Work goes much faster if the tool si sharp, too.
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