Trees are a great asset to have on your property. From shading your home to help with cooling to creating a great natural aesthetic, it’s no wonder homeowners go to great lengths to keep them. However, even the oldest trees eventually wear and decay, posing a risk to your safety and that of your house. As such, it’s important to know how to best cut down and remove a mature tree from your yard.
Start by Cutting Smaller Branches
Mature trees can be very intimidating to remove due to their size. They can potentially tower well above your home, making it difficult to determine where to start with the project. Therefore, it’s important to know that the general rule with tree removal is to start from the top and work down—this means climbing up and chopping away at the smaller branches. Not only does this make controlling the limbs easier, but it also reduces the hazard of cutting away larger sections later. Whether you use a ladder or rent a cherry picker, you’ll want to start where the tree itself ends.
Move On to Larger Sections
Once the branches are gone, move on to the spindly limbs. While these parts of the tree are much thicker, chainsaws can still make quick work of them. Additionally, with the branches removed, there’s less risk of one striking your home as the limb falls. Be conscious of where the limb could land when you cut it, and try to avoid flying woodchips during the cutting process.
Chop Up the Trunk in Chunks
Once you reach the trunk, start cutting it horizontally. During this step, make sure you’re only cutting away chunks that you can manage; don’t cut any thing too large or you may have trouble knocking it away from the rest of the tree.
Remove From the Property
Another vital part of cutting down your mature tree is removing it from the property. Even after the tree is down, there’s always a lot of debris to contend with. Depending on the size of the tree and the sections of its trunk, you may not be able to lift them on your own. If you’re going to do this work yourself, consider renting or purchasing a quality log grapple bucket attachment for a skid steer. These devices allow you to lift heavy pieces of trunk in one scoop, streamlining the debris removal process.
Grind the Stump
Lastly, you’ll need to grind down the remaining stump. You can do this with specialized grinding equipment that digs into the earth and loosens the stump at its roots. From there, the device can break apart the remaining stump and leave your yard clear for other activities.
Tree removal can be very demanding, especially when you’re working with a larger tree. If this level of work isn’t right for you, consider hiring a professional to get the job done. Either way, getting rid of problem trees will help protect yourself and your home.