Impregnating a tree stump for burning out?

I've got an old cherry tree stump which I really want rid of. It's probably about 10" high by 15" across, and the problem is that it's in an awkward position at the foot of a banked area, and surrounded by paving stones, so would be very disruptive and difficult to dig out. It's inaccessible to a tree stump grinder (other than maybe something hand- held).
Burning it out seems the way forward, and I've tried several times (over years), burying the thing in burning coal. Trouble is the stump doesn't really burn much as such; it just chars over, and has got quite dished on top, but there's a lot more to go. Anyway, it occurred to me that maybe I could try again this summer but first impregnate the remaining timber over a period of time (maybe honeycombing it with a drill first) to encourage it to burn properly. Anyone tried this? What would be good to use, that wouldn't just evaporate off?
I'm not after getting the whole thing out - if I just get the stump below ground level and cover it with a plant tub or something, that would be fine!
Or any other constructive ideas!?
--
David

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On Sat, 22 Mar 2014 17:41:34 GMT, Lobster
I think saltpetre (potassium nitrate) is the stuff to use. If you drill a vertical hole into the wood and pack it full of saltpetre, the rain water will dissolve it and it will eventually permeate the wood.
This will encourage the wood to rot, as it supplies a source of nitrogen for bacteria, and will also make the stump easier to burn as it is an oxidiser.
It's not a quick solution though.
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On 22/03/2014 17:41, Lobster wrote:

I'm not sure I understand why you can't just saw it off at ground level. You could then put a paving slab on it (to create a form of shallow plinth) and add the plant tub you mention.
You could stretch this idea to drilling holes in the flush stump and pouring SBK in them before placing the slab plinth. That way it will rot away out of site and be safe for passing animals and children.
--
Spider.
On high ground in SE London
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Spider wrote:

SBK SBK    Superbike (racing motorbikes) SBK    Svenska Brukshundklubben SBK    Snowboard Kids (gaming) SBK    Stichting Bouwkwaliteit (Dutch) SBK    Short Bus Kids SBK    South Brooklyn Railway Company SBK    Single Below Knee (amputation)
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You can buy a fungus to infect it with. Gets rid of most stumps (by rotting) in a couple of years. Forestry people use it.
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On Sat, 22 Mar 2014 17:41:34 +0000, Lobster wrote:

Probably no need to wait until summer.
Possibly try a more serious fire instead of just heaping coals?
If you build a temporary wall around it using old bricks, blocks and stuff you turn it into a fire pit.
Then light a fire around the stump and keep feeding it for a few hours.
Once you get a really high temperature the stump should begin to char away - but it will take time because the charcoal protects the wood underneath.
Keep poking the stump with an iron bar or similar to break off the charcoal and this will both feed the fire and expose more wood.
It may take several attempts, but if you persevere say over a couple of weeks you should be able to burn the stump down below ground level.
Then again, one good steady fire could shift it.
Cheers
Dave R
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On 22/03/2014 17:41, Lobster wrote:

Why not try hollowing it out and using it as the plant tub, this will in time help it to rot. If you had left 4 or 5ft of the trunk then it would have made digging it out an easier job as you would have had a good leaver. Alternately why not dig down about a foot then get someone with a chain saw to saw it off below the ground level you want, a 5 minute job for the saw.
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On 22/03/14 17:41, Lobster wrote:

drill lots of holes in it [g]
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On 22/03/2014 17:41, Lobster wrote:

You can get angle grinder disks which are similar to a proper stump grinder, basically a ring of chain-saw chain wrapped round a hub. Sometimes used for "carving".
Drill a lot of parallel deep holes with a big (say 25 mm) auger to remove a large proportion of the material?
I have used a 1 inch chisel in a 4 kg SDS drill to attack similar things in the past.
As another poster said, saltpetre (potassium nitrate) is a good oxidising agent if you can saturate the stump with it before applying fire. Potassium permanganate is another possibility, perhaps easier to obtain. When trying to purchase such things in kilogram quantities, suggest blacking up, put on false beard, and speak with funny accent. (Not).
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I recently had a need to produce lots of smoke and Potassium Nitrate was easily and cheaply available from suppliers on Ebay.
As far a removing stumps, I drilled lots of 1" dia holes about 6" into a 12" dia stump a few years ago and filled with Pot' Nitrate. I all but forgot about it for 3 or 4 years and when I went back to it it just pulled out of the ground , having rotted below the surface.
--
Bill

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On Sat, 22 Mar 2014 17:41:34 GMT, Lobster wrote:

So just buy a cheap pack of three crosscut hand saws and set to with the saws, or attack it with a splitting axe or just drive a 2" wide bolster chisel into it an inch from the edge, split lumps off it and work yoru way across. Might need some extra cold chisels as wedges or get a log splitting grenade. Just takes a bit of physical effort.
--
Cheers
Dave.
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On 22/03/2014 22:31, Dave Liquorice wrote:

Why all the fuss, it's only 15 inches across, playing with an angle grinder with "thin metal" disc for half an hour would make it look silly. It's not like it's a 3ft Oak stump.
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On 22/03/2014 17:41, Lobster wrote:

I would cut it off flush with a green wood blade in a reciprocating saw. The turn it into a swiss cheese on top with an auger bit. At which point there are various options for the last stage including many of those mentioned above, as well as the attention of a big roofing blow torch to char it, clean off the charred bit with SDS chisel or arbortech disk in an angle grinder. The repeat a couple of times until its low enough.
--
Cheers,

John.
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On Saturday, March 22, 2014 5:41:34 PM UTC, Lobster wrote:

You can break it up any way you like. If you've got something that can cut into it, albeit not far, at ground level, cut in, chop the overhang off wit h axe, repeat. Or cut across the top with circular saw and axe off. If you' ve got no effective power saw, auger drills are a workable way to remove bu lk.
NT
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On 22/03/14 17:41, Lobster wrote:

Saltpeter. It (dead stump) smoulders nicely in an oxygen rich atmosphere We had an old elm stump - going back 50+ years - and we were burning out the ditch adjoining it. It caught fire, and we doused it, but the next morning it had almost gone to ground level and in the next few days it simply vanished underground. Could not put it out.
I did the same with a leylandii 15 years ago. Built a fire on top and fed it and when it went out, no stump left.
so pour diesel or put candles on it or use old engine oil on it and get a good blaze going that will draw in air.
It WILL burn.
--
Ineptocracy

(in-ep-toc’-ra-cy) – a system of government where the least capable to
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wrote:

Systemic Brushwood Killer aka Triclopyr http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triclopyr
--

Chris

Gardening in West Cornwall overlooking the sea.
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On Sun, 23 Mar 2014 13:24:48 +1100, F Murtz wrote:

There's this wonderful new invention called "context". http://lmgtfy.com/?q=sbk+tree
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I've got an old cherry tree stump which I really want rid of. It's

Don't waste your time and fuel. Just attack it first of all with a drill or saw. I used an old blade in the circular saw crossing the top from all directions, then finish it off with hammer and wood chisel. It only took me a couple of hours chiselling spread over several sessions and it was gone.
Mike
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On Sat, 22 Mar 2014 18:32:35 +0000, harryagain wrote:

I went for a walk in the forest and collected all kinds of rotten timber. I put that on top of my tree stump, and after a few months it went rotten and was easily chopped out with a pick axe.
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On 23/03/2014 23:50, MattyF wrote:

I'm glad it worked for you. In principle, it's a good idea, but you could have introduced Honey Fungus or other problems. I wouldn't recommend it.
--
Spider.
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