Make a Birdbath from an Old Tree Stump


Removing a tree stump can be a costly or labor-intensive process. Instead of renting stump-removal equipment, extend the natural beauty of the yard by transforming it into the base of an elegant and easy-to-build birdbath. Using a square of slate and a reclaimed or inexpensive industrial plow blade, this simple birdbath enhances the landscape and will draw birds of all varieties to the yard.


2- to 3-foot-tall tree stump / 24-inch plain disc harrow blade / 2-foot x 2-foot slab of 1-inch thick slate / 1 can rust-protective spray paint / stone and tile sealant / 1 tube silicone / 1 Mason jar lid / 3 pounds river stones / chainsaw / level / cloth rag / tape measure


This project can be completed using an unsightly stump left behind when a tree is felled in the yard or using length of tree trunk at least 12 inches in diameter. Here, we are using a segment of a felled Leyland cypress. Mark at a height of 2-3 feet and use chainsaw to cut evenly so that the platform will have a level resting surface.


Using a level, check the top of the stump to make sure it is level. If using a trunk segment, make sure it rests squarely on the ground and does not rock when jostled.


Harrow discs are concave agricultural tiller blades often replaced as they wear out. Discs can be sourced used from larger farms or purchased new at any agricultural supply store for about $20. To protect the blade (our basin) from rust and give it a stylish look, spray with an even coat of rust-protective spray paint.


Use a rag to apply an even coat of stone and tile sealant to 2-foot x 2-foot slab of slate to waterproof.


Use tape measure to locate center of slate and mark with a pencil.


Using a squeeze tube or caulk gun, apply a thick, even circle of silicone at the marked center of platform about 4 inches in diameter.


Carefully place the harrow disc at the center of the slate, slowly pressing down into the silicone. The silicone will affix the disc to the platform and a small glob will rise through the hole in the center of the disc.


Carefully press a Mason jar lid down on the silicone in the bottom of the disc, shiny side up. The disc will help secure the basin to the platform and create a watertight seal.


Once the silicone has dried, center the birdbath on top of the tree stump. If using a cut segment of tree trunk, select a location near a tree line in partial shade for placement. Once your birdbath is in place, partially fill the basin with river stone to create an appealing surface on which birds can find footing as they bathe.


Fill the birdbath with fresh, clean water. The water depth from the rim to the stone surface should be 2-3 inches to appeal to birds of all sizes.


Birds will flock to a well-maintained birdbath. Birds will use your new yard feature for both bathing and drinking. Check often to make sure the water level remains high. Algae and debris should be removed regularly to keep this bird oasis looking good and open for business. Sturdy materials and simple construction will keep this rustic elegant birdbath looking good for years to come.

Originally: Make a Birdbath from an Old Tree Stump


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