How to Kill Mesquite Trees in Texas

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Things You'll Need

  • Leather gloves

  • Thick-soled boots

  • Safety goggles

  • Chain saw, hatchet or machete

  • Commercial herbicide

  • Vegetable oil or liquid dish detergent

  • Spray bottle or spray gun

Wear leather gloves and other protective clothing when killing mesquite trees in Texas

Mesquite trees are one of the most common trees found in Texas. Ranchers in Texas dislike mesquite greatly because it takes over grazing land and the large thorns on its branches can harm livestock. Mesquite is a hardy plant, and can be a challenge to remove.


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Step 1

Clear out the trees above ground with a chainsaw, hatchet or machete, cutting down to the roots as close as possible. Load the branches into a container or truck, or burn a controlled brush fire nearby to dispose of branches. Wear protective clothing, including leather gloves, long sleeves, jeans, thick-soled boots and safety goggles.

Step 2

Mix one part herbicide with three parts vegetable oil or liquid dish detergent and pour the mixture into a spray bottle or spray gun.

Step 3

Spray herbicide directly onto the tree stumps and surrounding area, making sure to cover any small budding trees. Alternately, plow up or hoe the tree's roots.


When using any type of herbicide, follow directions carefully and pay special attention to any warnings or recommendations. Controlled burning of trunks and roots will help to suppress tree growth, however it is not a permanent solution. For large areas with dense mesquite growth, professional help is recommended.