Now this is going to sound crazy... but bear with me. I've already got one roasting out back, so I know it works.

A little while back a contractor friend of mine told me a story about a house he had to build. Exciting shit, right? If not exciting, insightful. The 3000 sq. feet the house would be relegated to were heavily wooded.


Hack, Hack, Saw, Saw


Alright, now you have all these damn stumps, Einstein! Easy cheesy, my man! Kerosene's the plan. At this point you may find yourself questioning the method, my sanity, or both. Hold on.

Here's what you do, Jack: Do some damage to the stump. Axe it, chainsaw or drill mad holes, but make some nicks in the thing. That way it soaks up the kerosene. Then, pour kerosene on it! Go nuts! Make sure to get alot in. A gallon is about enough for your garden variety elm.


Now Leave!


Come back in two to six hours. The Kerosene should have been absorbed and the stump should be well soaked. If the weatherman jives with the plan, set the bitch ablaze. For better results, dump some charcoal on top, this will keep the temperature up and roast that tree good!

Wow, big flame right? It'll die down in just about five or ten. Once it does, the stump will smolder incessantly on-and-off for the next day or two.

Come back in a few days and just kick the sides in if they haven't caved yet. Use a shovel if you're a college boy, but the real men kick!


Enjoy your hole! Blame Nate if you burn your house down!

Don't do this in wooded areas. Fire can travel underground through the roots, and set nearby trees on fire. Roots can burn very slowly, so the problem might not be apparent until days or even weeks later. I would also recommend that you avoid doing this if the roots might have entangled with an ancient gas line or other buried utility lines. Roots tend to burn extra well if you have let the stump dry out for a year or two, but this is a danger even with freshly-cut trees.

There are alternatives; you can try to pull it out, using strong oxen or a tractor, or you can drill some holes in it and leave it to rot out in its own time. Many people will scoop out enough of the heartwood to use them as low planters for flowers, which prettifies them and increases the rate of rot.

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