If you’ve recently had a stump removal performed from your yard, you might be ready to plant something new in the same spot or nearby. However, replanting isn’t as easy as just throwing down some seeds or dropping a seedling into the pit left by the stump, especially if the tree you removed was diseased. The same pathogens that made the previous tree die could be living in the remaining soil, ready to infect any new seedlings you drop into the spot. Here are three things you can do to help new plants thrive where the old one died.
It is possible to simply have a bunch of soil hauled away. This is an inexact strategy for controlling soil pathogens as some of the infected soil you’re removing could fall back onto the ground without you knowing, and the borders of the infected zone are fuzzy at best. Still, removing the bulk of the soil at the spot where the stump used to be can make it easier to prevent the problem from spreading to other plants as you’re less likely to track infected soil around on your shoes, for example.
Anything you plant in that area should be something that is resistant to the disease that killed the other tree, even if you think you’ve removed all of the infected soil. If you plant a tree that is susceptible to the disease, you just give those pathogens a place to grow. Plus, given that some pathogens can be air- or
Give new plants in that area more attention, at least as the plants begin to acclimate to their new location. You don’t have to give them extra care, but just be more vigilant about checking for areas where there’s a lack of airflow through the branches (to prevent fungal infection), areas where drainage seems to be iffy (to prevent root rot), and so on. That will help you spot any signs of problems before they become too severe to fix easily.
You can contact the stump removal company, too, and other tree companies to see if the staff there have advice. Local companies will be in tune with local soil conditions and will be able to let you know if they’ve seen an increase in certain pathogens or other tree problems lately.