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Stoked

December 31, 2014

Heating with wood is a never-ending job.  Fell, cut, split, stack, haul, stack, haul, split, burn, hot water, cook, heat.

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Our firewood is seasoned, but we store the bulk of our firewood outside in a woodshed.  It soaks up humidity from the air since most of our winter weather is rainy.  To that end, on dry days I like to move some firewood to the house and stay a few weeks ahead of the wood needs.  Drier is always better with firewood.  After a few weeks inside, the wood loses that extra dampness and is quite dry and ready to burn.

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And for some reason the dogs just love hauling firewood… .  Me?  I just like having dry wood.

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20 Comments leave one →
  1. December 31, 2014 8:40 am

    I agree about having the wood dry, I find the difference between 1 year old and 2 year seasoned wood is incredible.
    I know have a proper cycle for it and have enough split for the next 4 winters, I store it stacked outside with a cover over it then after a year it gets moved into a shed the over the winter it gets moved to the garage adjoining the house and the cycle start all over again. It works well for me.

  2. December 31, 2014 9:11 am

    Reblogged this on Hunniebaer's Homestead.

  3. Sheila Z permalink
    December 31, 2014 9:57 am

    I bet the dogs are hoping when you move wood it will expose a nest of mice or some other such critters.

  4. Bev permalink
    December 31, 2014 10:01 am

    It is a good day for stoking up the fire. It was 12 degrees here this morning. The birds are so busy at the feeder. Of course you have to have your helpers oversee just what you are doing. They are hoping for a critter to be hiding in that wood pile.
    Heppy New Year to you and your family. Thank you for great pics and sharing this past year. We enjoy your planting and to the table so much.

  5. Kim permalink
    December 31, 2014 11:37 am

    How many cords of wood do you go through in a winter?,

  6. December 31, 2014 12:24 pm

    The fun for me is burning different kinds of wood cut at different times of year. Not just different kinds of wood, wood that was felled at different stages. Wood that was standing dead, trees knocked over by a summer storm with the sap up, wood cut in the winter with the sap down…all makes a big difference. We are losing pine trees by the pond. I let some of that sit for 3 years and burned it this fall. I didn’t know what to expect, really, but it was a pleasant, hot fire. Sometimes you want a hot, lasting fire (hedge), sometimes you want a slightly cooler fire (elm).

    Looks like you have a load of fir there. Is that your general purpose burn or is that your hot fire source? When do you burn chestnut? Surely it’s more interesting than, “I burn whatever is within reach.”

    • December 31, 2014 12:45 pm

      I could write a book about wood, maybe I should take that “Reading Wood” post out of drafts and dust it off. Fir is our go-to firewood, cooking or heating and for holding a night fire. About a month ago I got into a “discussion” on a forum after someone said they let their softwoods rot and only burnt hardwood…at that rate I wouldn’t be needing a stove since 98% of our trees are softwoods. I never did tell her about the stump at the edge of one of our pastures, it’s a Doug Fir stump probably made into a stump somewhere ca 1890, and it’s still there, I’m waiting for it to rot I guess 😉

      I try to burn chestnut when I don’t have to smell it.

      • December 31, 2014 12:52 pm

        If it helps the “discussion” I have quite a bit of rotted hardwood sitting out there…

        • December 31, 2014 1:18 pm

          Nah, I’m happy to be labeled a heretic, no way am I going to get my hands on much hardwood for a fuel source. Oil would be cheaper. It’s a simple fact that you use what you have, we have an abundance of softwoods.

        • January 1, 2015 7:49 am

          They say that about alder, too! My ex made a few wood fence posts out of alder he only treated with a blow torch and motor oil. A few years later its STiLL not rotten.

  7. CassieOz permalink
    December 31, 2014 2:27 pm

    Ya burn watcha got, I reckon. We don’t grow softwoods here so it’s all hard eucalypt of some type. Just now, after New Year, is when DH starts to bring in the wood to the shed (which will be needed intermittently from late March). I have no idea how to measure how much we go through but the woodshed has to be full up past shoulder height and right to the door to get us through. There are piles of stacked logs in paddocks where he’s cut and stacked fallen trees perhaps a couple of years ago (we never run out of fallen trees or huge branches). It’ll be shortened with the chainsaw if need be, split and stacked in the shed progressively over the next couple of months and then just pulled up onto the veranda in a hand wagon to cover a couple of days at a time. He’s got a good system now and it gets done early because he’s not avoiding it any more since we got the gas operated splitter (some of those eucalypt log slices are heavy!). It’s one of those jobs you can really regret if you don’t start it early enough.

    • December 31, 2014 3:44 pm

      Amen to the wood splitter, 35+ years with and axe and finally we gave in. Now we just split to order, cooking or heat? And I love to split kindling and kitchen wood. Fun times.

      Eucalyptus sounds like it would smell pretty good 🙂 It’s the same here, storm damage decides what gets made into firewood.

  8. Carrie permalink
    January 1, 2015 1:32 am

    Happy New Year! May all your blessings be heifers 🙂

  9. January 1, 2015 2:36 am

    My hubby works at the wood pile all year on the days he wants too, because he has it stored for 4 years. It makes it so much better and now all he needs to do is just cut up the downed trees and dead trees as he goes along his way. I for one love wood heat, nothing better in my mind. Happy New Year!

  10. Luddene Perry permalink
    January 1, 2015 6:56 am

    Ugh… don’t remind me! It’s been -10°F the last few nights and not much warmer in the day. Just thought of trudging out to the woodshed makes me procrastinate till the last stick.

  11. epeavey1 permalink
    January 1, 2015 11:11 am

    For sure the wood is a chore and if you don’t stay ahead of it cutting, splitting, stacking then hauling it up the ramp to the porch. We need to get a wood splitter soon I hope, we use at least 2 cords a winter only heating the front part of the house.,

  12. mom24boys permalink
    January 7, 2015 10:06 am

    My goal is to get a splitter by August of this year. I saved up enough for one but then upon reflection, we decided a yard tractor is more needed so the $$ will go for that. Now Hub has dreams of PTO-everything. We’ll see.

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