Best Way To Hollow Out A Tree Stump

What Is The Best Way To Hollow Out A Tree Stump

We may want to get rid of the trees around us, especially if they constitute danger or harm to us; when these trees are cut, you are left with a stump that becomes an eyesore if you let it.

That is why you need to hollow out your stump so that you can re-purpose them into a planter, a birdbath, or what have you. There are a few ways to make a hollow in that tree stump, but the easiest and invariably the best method is using a chainsaw.

You can also use fire or a chisel and hammer to create a hollow in a tree stump, but they are not as efficient as a chainsaw.

Why You Need To Hollow Out Your Tree Stump?

Tree stumps exist because trees have been cut down for so many reasons, it could be because the tree is diseased, dying, or you need more space in your backyard.

When these trees are cut down, the stump left often becomes infected with diseases or even infested by flies that inhabit it. However, you can remedy the situation by turning this pesky stump into an eye-popping accent in your space.

There are many practical and decorative things you can turn your tree stump into, but you will first have to make a hole in the middle. You can easily convert this into a planter where you plant flowers and ornamental plants that will beautify your home.

You can hollow that tree stump and then turn it into a birdbath where different birds can come in for a drink. This will attract many beautiful birds into your home, which can make your home more interesting and inviting.

You can hollow the tree stump in your space and convert them into a feeding trough for birds. If you are like several people who want to attract squirrels to their home so that they can watch them eat and jump up and down from trees, then you can turn your hollow tree stump into a container that will hold different treats for the squirrels.

Best Way To Hollow Out A Tree Stump

Making a hollow in a tree stump is no walk in the park; it is an uphill task that can be time-consuming, whatever the method you use. However, when the hollow in your tree stump is done well, you will find the effort well worth it.

There are just about 3 common ways to hollow out a tree stump; we will take you through the 3 of them before we give our verdicts on the best methods. Below are some of the ways you can hollow out your tree stump:

How To Hollow A Tree Stump Manually

To make a hollow manually in a tree stump, you will need:

  • A chisel
  • A hammer
  • Coarse-grain sandpaper
  • Wood drill bit


1. Start by getting the tree stump soft, by either wetting it yourself or waiting for the rain to drench it and make it softer; this is to make your chore a lot easier.

2. Use a drill to make holes around the area of the tree stump that you want to hollow out. You should keep the hole about 2 inches apart.

3. Then, use your chisel and hammer and start chipping away wood, starting from the holes near the edges. You should maintain a 35-. Degree angle with the chisel to chip out woods more effectively.

4. Remove all the wood chippings and dispose of them properly; you can turn them into mulching, add them to your compost pile, or keep it as wood kindling.

5. Chisel out any rough bits or jagged edges with the sandpaper, including the bottom of the hollow, until it is smooth.

6. Clean the stump properly to get rid of any dust or debris left.

And there you have it, a hollow tree stump, ready to be used.

How To Hollow Out A tree Stump With Fire

To hollow out a tree stump with fire, you must be a lot more careful since you will be dealing with unpredictable fire, so you should take all necessary precautions to ensure that the procedure is safe. Ensure that there are no flammable materials that can easily get ignited.

You can go a step further by making available a fire fighting material, a bucket of sand, or a fire extinguisher if the fire goes out of hand.

To make a hollow a tree stump with fire, you will need the following:

  • Chicken wire
  • Power drill
  • Potassium nitrate/ charcoal or kerosene
  • Boiling water
  • Kindling


1. The first thing to do for safety sakes is to encircle the tree stump with chicken wire.

2. Make holes about 25cm deep using a power drill all around the top of the tree stump; you should make the holes about 2 inches apart while ensuring that the spade bit is placed at a 30-degree angle.

3. Clean off any sawdust and debris around the holes you just drilled.

4. Then, fill each of the holes with potassium nitrate; pour boiling water into the holes so that the potassium nitrate can completely dissolve into the tree stump. You can then pour kerosene e or charcoal into the holes to make the stump more flammable.

5. Then, use some tinder and kindling to start a fire on the tree stump. You should ensure that the fire does not burn more than the exact area where you want your hollow.

6. When the stump is burned, break off the pieces of wood it charcoal left in the hole, and you will be left with a hollow in the tree stump.

How to Hollow Out A Tree Stump With A Chainsaw

For this method, you will need the following:

  • Chainsaw ( obviously)
  • Chisel
  • Hammer
  • Sandpaper


You must ensure that the wood is dry before using the chainsaw to create a hollow in a tree stump. Secondly, you must ensure that you know how to handle the chainsaw because you might hurt yourself if you don’t know how to use the machine.


1. Start by carving the center of the tree stump with a chainsaw; while you are at it, use a chisel to carve out the woods at the edges of the tree stump where the chainsaw cannot easily reach. Secondly, because the chisel is a hand tool, you can easily use it with the chainsaw to ensure the edges and the outer boundaries of the tree are protected.

2. The next thing to do is remove all the chippings and carved-out pieces from the tree stump.

3. Use the chisel and sandpaper to smooth out all the edges of the tree stump and the hollow to get a smooth finish. This leaves you with a smooth hollow on the center of the tree stump, which you can put into any use.

The Verdict

From the tree methods elucidated above on how to create a hollow in a tree stump, I think that the Chainsaw method of making a hollow in a tree stump is the best, this is not unconnected to the fact that it is less energy and time consuming, and it does not expose one to so much risk and rigor like you have with the fire method and the chisel and hammer method respectively.

But this is our opinion; feel free to adopt any method that works for you and that you feel comfortable with too.

Turning A Hollow Tree Stump into A Planter

Planters are the most common way most people put their hollow tree stumps into practical use. To turn the hollow tree stump into a planter, follow the steps below:

1. Ensure that the depth of the hollow is deep enough to hold the roots of the plant you will be planting in the hollow tree. A depth of 6 inches will accommodate the roots of many plants.

2. You then make drainage holes in the center of the hollow where water will drain from the stump to its outside.

3. Clean off any dust or debris left in the hollow. You can use a stream of water to get rid of any dirt left in the hollow. The water should drain seamlessly through the drainage holes.

4. Gently apply wood preservatives all around the hollow and leave it to dry for about a day or 2.

5. Then, fill the hollow with a well-drained potting soil of about 3/4 full of the hollow volume.

6. Plant the flower or plant of your choice, ensuring that you give the plant the right growth condition, including the right amount of manure, water, and what gave you.


To make a hollow is not an easy task, but the end product provides you with an opportunity to add a little beauty to your yard.

You can make this hollow either manually or by using fire, but the best method is using a chainsaw. You can make a planter out of the tree stump where you can plant flowers and ornamental plants that will make your space pop.

Helpful Links:

We trust this article helped you learn the best way to hollow out a tree stump. You may also want to check If Burning a Tree Stump is Safe?

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