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  1. #1
    Member splotkin's Avatar
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    Sep 2007
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    Western Ma
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    Kubota BX1850

    Default How to get tree roots out of lawn

    I have a BX 1850 with a FEL. I have used the FEL to grub out some of the roots but it really makes a mess out of the rest of the lawn. Sure wish there was a 12 inch wide FEL bucket, or is that what a backhoe is for? Well, no backhoe but was thinking of using a subsoiler on the back and slowly pulling out some of the smaller roots. The one I was looking at is at tractor supply..

    http://www.tractorsupply.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay_10551_10001_34343_______14345|14346 |14357|34343?listingPage=true

    If I take it easy I do not think I will do any damage to the 3-point hitch. Any opinion or better suggestions.

    The big roots I usually pull out with a chain after a couple of chops with the pick ax. .

    Thanks,

    Scott

  2. #2
    Platinum Member RayCo's Avatar
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    Jul 2005
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    981
    Location
    Chester County, PA
    Tractor
    Kubota BX24

    Default Re: How to get tree roots out of lawn

    A backhoe is pretty effective with such things, although I understand that's not an option. Even if you did have a backhoe for your tractor, it'd still be a bit limited in what it can do. I've dug up a fair number of stumps and pulled out roots with my BX backhoe, but the truth is that I'll probably rent an excavator for a weekend sometime to do the rest. I have about 25 stumps from 70' trees to dig up, and it'd probably cost me as much in diesel using the BX as it would to just rent an excavator. And besides that, my two year old daughter really likes them and says, "Look Daddy! Excavator!" whenever we see one. So, she'd be into seeing one in her yard.

    I'll probably first get a Bro-Tek ripper tooth, as I believe that would help, but in the end, it'll probably be the excavator. I don't know how much stuff you have to deal with, but if you're talking about more than just a few roots, it might be something you'd also like to consider.
    </div>
    Ray
    BX24

  3. #3
    Veteran Member have_blue's Avatar
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    Oct 2003
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    1,730
    Location
    Eunice, Louisiana
    Tractor
    L4400

    Default Re: How to get tree roots out of lawn

    I had a root problem too. Like you, I pulled out the big ones with a chain hooked to the loader. They came out easily if I pulled them against the grain. Having a helper to drive the tractor while I hooked them up was insensible.


    After the big ones were gone, I added some weight to my 66" disk harrow and plowed the entire yard in a cross hatch pattern. It chopped the remaining roots into small sizes, and they were easy to pick up or pull up by hand. Helper once again indispensable!
    -

    Bob

    From the heart of Cajun Country

  4. #4
    Veteran Member KeithInSpace's Avatar
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    May 2006
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    Location
    Fred'burg, Virginia
    Tractor
    Kubota BX2230

    Default Re: How to get tree roots out of lawn

    Quote Originally Posted by RayCo
    "Look Daddy! Excavator!"
    Funny. We're in Engineering and visit construction sites with the kids regularly. They can pick out the different machines...loader, excavator, grader, mixer, off-road dumper, on-road dumper, roller, bulldozer, etc. Lots of fun. Next is to get them driving each one...



    To the OP:

    Not sure a BH is the solution, so don't feel bad for not having one. I have LOTS of trees in my yard and can't dig a spoonfull of soil without hitting a root.

    What tool to use depends on what you're trying to accomplish. I would agree that the FEL is NOT the right thing to use.

    I totally re-did my lawn a year ago and used my box-blade almost exclusively. With the scarifiers set down 2 inches, it grabbed all the surface roots and pulled them to the top. I walked around with an axe and chopped off all that were big enough to stick out of the ground.

    I own the subsoiler/middle-buster you're looking at from TSC. Haven't used it yet, but I'm quite certain the middle-buster plow will pull a bunch of stuff to the surface. If you used the subsoiler tooth, I think that will just break the roots underground and not bring them up the way you want.

    My opinion is this: If you have a specific area you're working in and would like to get ALL the roots up, that (the middle buster) would be a great way to go. If you're trying to clean up a large area, I'd use the scarifier teeth on a box-blade. Lean it forward and set the teeth all the way down and you should get a solid 3 inches into the ground. It will do less damage than the FEL and you end up with a well aerated lawn to boot.
    Kubota BX2230, FEL, Woods BH, 60" MMM, Bagger, 4' Box Blade, PHD, 8' x 20' 10k# Dovetail Trailer

    Those of you who think you know it all are particularly annoying to those of us who do.

  5. #5
    Veteran Member rdsaustintx's Avatar
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    Dec 2004
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    Location
    Texas Hill Country
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    Kubota BX-23

    Default Re: How to get tree roots out of lawn

    I dunno, subsoiler might do the trick, as long as you drag along the bigger roots.

    Pulled out maybe a thousand feet of old water line and electrical conduit with one. Worked great.

  6. #6
    Member splotkin's Avatar
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    Sep 2007
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    35
    Location
    Western Ma
    Tractor
    Kubota BX1850

    Default Re: How to get tree roots out of lawn

    Thanks for all the great advise. The area is about a quarter of an acre. I will have to do some thinking. I will probably go with either the box blade or Middle buster/subsoiler. Subsoiler is a lot cheaper so that is a big concern. The subsoiler will also probably work better on the larger roots. The box blade might grab too much to handle in one pass. Calling in an excavator would be overkill. However I just realized that if I go with the subsoiler I need to call digsafe. I have underground utilities and do not want to do what "rdsaustintx" did with his old pipes.
    Thanks,
    Scott

  7. #7
    Super Star Member
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    First organized permanent settlement in the northwest territory
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    2003 Kubota BX1500/2004 Kubota Bx23/2005 Kubota BX1500

    Default Re: How to get tree roots out of lawn

    How about a stump grinder?
    Tractors 2003 Kubota BX1500 / 2004 Kubota Bx23 / 2005 Kubota BX1500.
    Attachments 60'' Front Blade/48'' Rear Tiller/FEL/Back Hoe /
    60'' MMM/Clamp on Forks/48'' MMM
    South of Canton Ohio L .B

  8. #8
    Super Star Member
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    Default Re: How to get tree roots out of lawn

    Quote Originally Posted by splotkin
    Thanks for all the great advise. The area is about a quarter of an acre. I will have to do some thinking. I will probably go with either the box blade or Middle buster/subsoiler. Subsoiler is a lot cheaper so that is a big concern. The subsoiler will also probably work better on the larger roots. The box blade might grab too much to handle in one pass. Calling in an excavator would be overkill. However I just realized that if I go with the subsoiler I need to call digsafe. I have underground utilities and do not want to do what "rdsaustintx" did with his old pipes.
    Thanks,
    Scott
    I have some pine trees with 4 to 6'' wide roots above the surface .
    I'd think one could use a stump grinder to grind then off till an inch or 2 below the surface.
    Tractors 2003 Kubota BX1500 / 2004 Kubota Bx23 / 2005 Kubota BX1500.
    Attachments 60'' Front Blade/48'' Rear Tiller/FEL/Back Hoe /
    60'' MMM/Clamp on Forks/48'' MMM
    South of Canton Ohio L .B

  9. #9
    Super Star Member
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    2003 Kubota BX1500/2004 Kubota Bx23/2005 Kubota BX1500

    Default Re: How to get tree roots out of lawn

    Quote Originally Posted by splotkin
    I have a BX 1850 with a FEL. I have used the FEL to grub out some of the roots but it really makes a mess out of the rest of the lawn.
    Scott
    Are thes roots from still standing trees or R they from trees that have been cut down?
    Tractors 2003 Kubota BX1500 / 2004 Kubota Bx23 / 2005 Kubota BX1500.
    Attachments 60'' Front Blade/48'' Rear Tiller/FEL/Back Hoe /
    60'' MMM/Clamp on Forks/48'' MMM
    South of Canton Ohio L .B

  10. #10
    Veteran Member KeithInSpace's Avatar
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    Fred'burg, Virginia
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    Kubota BX2230

    Default Re: How to get tree roots out of lawn

    Quote Originally Posted by LBrown59
    How about a stump grinder?
    I recently helped my Stepdad out with an old Bradford Pear Tree.

    He had a guy say he could grind out the stump for $80. After hacking on it for 3 hours and destroying his grinder teeth, he gave up.

    I trailered my machine down to the house and we spent 12 hours digging up the better part of his side yard removing root mat. In the end, I basically excavated a 40 x 50 patch of yard a solid foot down with my backhoe in an effort to remove the roots. They had grown together to create a dense mat of root matter that was holding the soil together.

    My experience in my yard has yielded similar observations. Stump grinders are only good for folks that want to HIDE the tree they just cut down. If you want to GET RID of the stump and associated roots, you need to dig...no way around it.

    In relation to the OP's question, I don't see a stump grinder working on ground roots. As mentioned, my Stepdad tried it as a "root grinder" and the results were very, very poor.
    Kubota BX2230, FEL, Woods BH, 60" MMM, Bagger, 4' Box Blade, PHD, 8' x 20' 10k# Dovetail Trailer

    Those of you who think you know it all are particularly annoying to those of us who do.

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