Do Tree Roots Die After Stump Grinding in Phoenix, AZ?

Do tree roots die after stump grinding? It may surprise you to learn that they don’t always. In this post, Tree Workers of Phoenix, your experts in tree removal in Phoenix, explain this in more detail. 

What Is Stump Grinding? 

When you fell a tree, it still has energy in its roots, and its first instinct is to sprout again. Arborists use the negative effect of stump grinding on tree roots to short-circuit this process.

The technique is simple: the team grinds what’s left of the trunk away. They’ll usually go to a few inches below ground level.

Is the Process Fatal? 

Do tree roots die after stump grinding? Not necessarily; the only sure way to prevent sprouting is to remove the entire root system.

The effects of stump grinding on tree roots are unpredictable. Arborists aim to damage the tree roots to such an extent that they can’t recover, but there are some aggressive species that can survive the onslaught. 

Tree Root Mortality Post Grinding

Most of the time, tree root decay after stump removal is a sure thing. However, more pernicious species will survive the process and sprout again. How successful the plant is depends on the impact of stump grinding on the root system. 

How severe the damage is depends on several factors.

Species and Foundation Damage

Myrtles, poplars, willows, oaks, elms, and maples are all examples of trees that can survive this kind of attack. They have invasive root systems that extend far, which can sometimes lead to foundation damage of tree roots, especially if the trees are located near buildings or structures.

Soil Fertility

If your tree is in highly nutritious soil, there’s less correlation between stump grinding and root decay. Rich, loamy soil makes it easier for the tree to spread, allowing it to access nutrients. Therefore, it has more roots on which to draw when necessary. 

The Root System

Stump removal and root decomposition are not guaranteed when the tree has an extensive root system. Maples and oaks sink their toes deep into the ground, increasing their chances of survival. 

Grind Depth

Some contractors take shortcuts here and only grind the stump down to ground level. This increases the odds of it growing again, as you’re not causing enough damage. 

How To Stop Your Tree from Growing Back

You should be vigilant and deal with any new sprouts as soon as you notice them. Cut them off and dispose of them.

If you’re persistent, the tree weakens and dies. You should use a herbicide as a last resort because there’s a risk of poisoning other plants.

An old home remedy is to drill several holes in the stump. Make them at least 8 inches deep, then pour Epsom salts into them. You’ll need to top up the salt every once in a while for the next few weeks. 

Contact the Professionals

Now that you can answer, “Do tree roots die after stump grinding?” you’ll want to learn how to stop tree roots from growing back. If you’d prefer a shortcut and are certain that you’ve dealt with the problem, call our arborists. 

Reach out to Tree Workers of Phoenix at 602-320-2797 to handle everything. We’ll remove the tree, treat the stump, and make sure it never grows back.


Tree Workers of Phoenix has been in business since 1994 and is a member of the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and International Society of
Arboriculture (ISA).


18402 N. 19th Ave. #115

Phoenix, AZ 85023

Phone: 602-320-2797

Email :

Hours of Operation :

Monday - Sunday : 9:00am-5:00pm


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