How To Kill The Most Common Trees (Pine, Palm, Oak and More)

Looking for how to kill a tree?

I love trees, but sometimes they are in the wrong place and need to go.

On the internet, you can read tons of ways for how to kill a tree.

I had at least 15 elm trees growing up in my yard that I didn’t want. They were in my grass, destroying my fence and cumbering my garden.

After trying a few methods for getting rid of my trees I found that not all methods work on every tree.

Using Roundup, Epsom salt or copper nails sounds nice but these methods may prove ineffective on the hardiest trees.

I tried these on my Elm trees and they didn’t work.

The crazy part is that some of the most common trees don’t need anything but a chainsaw to kill them.

After spending hours talking to Arborists, people who kill trees for a living, I developed this comprehensive list of how to kill the most common trees with specific details and instructions for each tree type.

Scroll down to find specific instructions on how to kill your tree. You will find if you need to use a tree killer or if it can just be cut down.

Pine Tree

Pine trees like all conifers can be killed by simply cutting them down. To tree killers or chemicals needed. Go to the How To Kill A Pine Tree guide for complete instructions on how to kill and remove its stump.

Palm Tree

Palm trees can be killed by cutting them down. No poison or chemicals are needed for killing palm trees. Once the top branches or canopy of the palm tree is cut off the palm tree will die, roots and all. Go to the How To Kill A Palm Tree guide for complete instructions on how to kill and remove its stump.

Oak Tree

Oak trees can be killed by cutting them down. No poison or chemicals are needed for killing oak trees. Go to the How To Kill An Oak Tree guide for complete instructions on how to kill and remove its stump.

Maple Tree

Maple trees can be killed by cutting them down. No poison or chemicals are needed for killing maple trees. Go to the How To Kill A Maple Tree guide for complete instructions on how to kill and remove its stump.

Cottonwood Tree

Cottonwood trees are resilient and need to be poisoned to kill them or they will continue to grow branches after being cut down. Many articles will say to use roundup, Epsom salts or even bleach these methods may not work. Tordon will work every time. See the How To Kill A Cottonwood Tree guide for complete instructions on how to kill and remove a Cottonwood tree.

Russian Olive Tree

Russian Olive Trees are very hardy and need to be poisoned to be killed. Cut them down to a stump and apply tree killer. Salt, bleach, and Roundup may not be enough to kill a Russian Olive Tree.

My dad cut a Russian Olive tree down in his yard and didn’t poison it and now it looks like a bush. Go to the How To Kill A Russian Olive Tree guide for complete instructions on how to kill and remove its stump.

Elm Tree

Elm trees must be poisoned to be killed completely. Cut them down to a stump and apply a chemical called Tordon. It’s what most Arborists use and recommend. Trust me, Epsom salt and roundup will not kill an elm tree. I used these chemicals on my Elm trees and they didn’t die. Go to the How To Kill An Elm Tree guide for complete instructions on how to kill and remove an Elm tree.

Tree of Heaven

Tree of Heaven or Ailanthus are very invasive and need to be poisoned to be killed. Cut them down to a stump and apply a tree killer. Salt, bleach, and Roundup may not be enough to kill a tree of heaven. Go to the How To Kill A Tree of Heaven guide for complete instructions on how to kill and remove its stump.

Cedar Tree

Cedar trees, like all conifers, can be killed by cutting them down. No poison or chemicals are needed for killing Cedar trees. Go to the How To Kill A Cedar Tree guide for complete instructions on how to kill and remove its stump.

Fir Tree

Fir trees, like pines trees and other conifers, can be killed by cutting them down. No poison or chemicals are needed for killing fir trees. Go to the How To Kill A Fir Tree guide for complete instructions on how to kill and remove its stump.

Ficus Tree

Ficus trees must be poisoned to be killed completely. Cut them down to a stump and apply a tree killer. Salt, bleach, and Roundup may not be enough to kill a ficus tree. See the complete How To Kill A Ficus Tree guide for instructions on how to kill and remove a Ficus tree.

Willow Tree

Willow Trees are tough trees and the stump needs to be treated to completely die. After cutting a willow tree down, treat the stump with a tree killer. Go to the How To Kill A Willow Tree guide for complete instructions on how to kill and remove its stump.

Poplar Tree

Poplars must be treated with a tree killer. Cut them down to a stump and apply a tree killer. Tordon is what most Arborists use and recommend. Salt, leach, and Roundup may not be enough to kill a poplar. Go to the How To Kill A Poplar Tree guide for complete instructions on how to kill and remove a Poplar tree.

Cypress Tree

Cypress trees, like all evergreens and conifers, can be killed by cutting them down. No poison or chemicals are needed for killing Cypress trees. Go to How To Kill A Cypress Tree for complete information on how to kill and remove its stump.

Holy Tree

Holly trees, like other evergreens, can be killed by cutting them down. No poison or chemicals are needed for killing Holly trees. Go to How To Kill A Holly Tree for complete information on how to kill and remove its stump.

Aspen Tree

Some arborists told me you can just cut down Aspen trees to kill them and others recommended applying a tree killer. Be careful when you kill an Aspen tree because Aspens grow in colonies. They are all connected through the roots from the parent tree. All Aspens may die if you treat one unless they were planted as separate trees.

If you only want the one Aspen to die then I would recommend just cutting it down and not applying chemicals. If you want to make sure the all the Aspen trees and roots are dead I recommend using Tordon or Gordon’s Stump Killer. Go to How To Kill An Aspen Tree for more detailed instructions.

Tamarisk Tree

Tamarisk trees need to be poisoned to be killed. Cut them down to a stump and apply a tree killer. Salt, bleach, and Roundup may not be enough to kill a Tamarix. Go to the How To Kill A Tamarisk Tree guide for complete instructions on how to kill and remove its stump.

Apple Tree

Apple trees can be killed by cutting them down. No poison or chemicals are needed for killing apple trees. Go to the How To Kill An Apple Tree guide for complete instructions on how to kill and remove its stump.

I hope this helps you get rid of your unwanted trees once and for all.