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Folklore: firewood that is good to burn

DigiTrad:
LOGS TO BURN
MORE WOOD
THE WOODCUTTER'S SONG


Related threads:
(origins) Origins: Logs to Burn (23)
Lyr Req: Firewood Song? / Woodcutter's Song (31)
Lyr Req: Logs to burn (closed) (4) (closed)
Lyr Req: Trees (Walter de la Mare) (10)


The Sandman 07 Aug 12 - 06:22 AM
Henry Krinkle 07 Aug 12 - 07:06 AM
kendall 07 Aug 12 - 07:24 AM
Newport Boy 07 Aug 12 - 09:30 AM
The Sandman 07 Aug 12 - 09:52 AM
Bill D 07 Aug 12 - 10:06 AM
GUEST,CS 07 Aug 12 - 10:15 AM
GUEST,John Foxen 07 Aug 12 - 10:19 AM
Richard Bridge 07 Aug 12 - 12:03 PM
GUEST,mg 07 Aug 12 - 12:46 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 07 Aug 12 - 01:15 PM
kendall 07 Aug 12 - 01:24 PM
Deckman 07 Aug 12 - 02:00 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 07 Aug 12 - 02:46 PM
Ebbie 07 Aug 12 - 03:14 PM
Mo the caller 07 Aug 12 - 04:29 PM
GUEST,foggers 08 Aug 12 - 07:16 AM
Nigel Parsons 08 Aug 12 - 08:09 AM
Lonesome EJ 08 Aug 12 - 01:22 PM
The Sandman 08 Aug 12 - 01:26 PM
GUEST 09 Aug 12 - 01:22 PM
open mike 09 Aug 12 - 02:05 PM
Roger the Skiffler 10 Aug 12 - 12:22 PM
Mo the caller 10 Aug 12 - 12:33 PM
GUEST,Blandiver 10 Aug 12 - 12:52 PM
GUEST,999 10 Aug 12 - 03:05 PM
ChanteyLass 10 Aug 12 - 09:57 PM
GUEST,John Foxen 11 Aug 12 - 01:22 PM
Rumncoke 11 Aug 12 - 05:08 PM
GUEST,999 11 Aug 12 - 05:48 PM
The Sandman 12 Aug 12 - 05:14 AM
GUEST,Blandiver 12 Aug 12 - 05:48 AM
The Sandman 13 Aug 12 - 03:21 AM
Dave Hanson 13 Aug 12 - 07:03 AM
GUEST,Dave Illingworth 13 Aug 12 - 04:51 PM
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Subject: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: The Sandman
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 06:22 AM

the proper kind of logs to burn.

OAK logs will warm you well,
If they're old and dry.
LARCH logs of pine wood smell,
But the sparks will fly.
BEECH logs for Christmas time,
YEW logs heat well.
SCOTCH logs it is a crime,
For anyone to sell.

BIRCH logs will burn too fast,
CHESTNUT scarce at all
HAWTHORN logs are good to last,
If you cut them in the fall
HOLLY logs will burn like wax
You should burn them green
ELM logs like smouldering flax
No flame to be seen

PEAR logs and APPLE logs,
they will scent your room.
CHERRY logs across the dogs,
Smell like flowers in bloom
But ASH logs, all smooth and grey,
burn them green or old;
Buy up all that come your way,
They're worth their weight in gold.
anyone know about the japanese tree, shoumert?the one with pretty red yellow leaves


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: Henry Krinkle
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 07:06 AM

And little lambs eat ivy
(:-( D)=


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: kendall
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 07:24 AM

You can't beat dry maple


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: Newport Boy
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 09:30 AM

It used to be said that elm 'burned cold', but we burned a lot when there was plenty around, and I don't think it's much different from other hardwoods. For best heat/minimum tar & smoke, only use well-seasoned wood - at least a year old.

There's a number of varieties of sumach trees, the most common in the UK is a medium size variety which grows about 3m high and will spread as far as you let it. Don't plant one unless you either have loads of space or you like an untidy mono-culture border. I'm into the 3rd year of trying to get rid on one. We're getting closer - only 20 or so shoots above ground so far this year. I reckon we'll have won in another 4 or 5 years.

Phil


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: The Sandman
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 09:52 AM

I have no intention of planting one, but a neighbour cut one in his garden, it appears the wood is not much good as firewood.
Incidentally ash and holly are quite ok burned green, but better if left a year.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: Bill D
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 10:06 AM

always a variant....

http://mudcat.org/@displaysong.cfm?SongID=8211

THE WOODCUTTER'S SONG

Oak logs will warm you well
That are old and dry
Logs of pine will sweetly smell
But the sparks will fly
Birch logs will burn too fast
And chestnut scarce at all, sir
Hawthorne logs are good to last
That are cut well in the fall, sir

Surely you will find
No compare in the hardwood logs
Cut in the winter time

Holly logs will burn like wax
You could burn them green
Elm logs burn like smolderin flax
With no flame to be seen
Beech logs for winter time
Yew logs as well, sir
Green elder logs it is a crime
For any man to sell, sir

Surely you will find
No compare in the hardwood logs
Cut in the winter time

Pear logs and apple logs
They will scent your room
And cherry logs across the dogs
Smell like flowers a bloom
But ash logs smooth and gray
Buy them green or old, sir
And buy up all that come your way
For they're worth their weight in gold sir


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 10:15 AM

Rapunzel & Sedayne do a lovely version of this - I must learn it.

If you still have it up online folks, care to link here?


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: GUEST,John Foxen
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 10:19 AM

Johnny Collins used to sing:


Logs to Burn

    Logs to burn, logs to burn,
    Logs to save the coal a turn,
    Here's a word to make you wise,
    When you hear the woodsman cry.

Beechwood fires burn bright and clear, Hornbeam blazes too,
If the logs are kept a year, to season through and through.

Oaken logs will warm you well, if they're old and dry,
Larch logs of pinewood smell but the sparks will fly.

Pine is good and so is Yew for warmth through wintry days,
The Poplar and the Willow too, they take too long to blaze.

Birch logs will burn too fast, Alder scarce at all,
Chestnut logs are good to last, cut them in the fall.

Holly logs will burn like wax, you should burn them green,
Elm logs like smouldering flax, no flames with them are seen.

Pear logs and Apple logs, they will scent your room,
Cherry logs, across the dogs, they smell like flowers in bloom.

Ash logs, so smooth and gray, burn them green or old,
Buy up all that come your way they're worth their weight in gold.

But I see there's a thread on that already
Origins: logs to burn


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 12:03 PM

I find free logs go best in my logburner.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 12:46 PM

Here in PNW USA they swear by alder..it was until fairly recently considered a weed suitable only for firewood but now they are making furniture etc. out of it. It grows really fast in swampy areas.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 01:15 PM

Heat value-
"One ton of coal contains about 24 million BTUs. It is equivalent to 175 gallons of #2 fuel oil, 240 therms of natural gas, 260 gallons of propane, 3 tons of green wood chips or 1.4 cords of hardwood. Most coal furnaces and boilers have a heating efficiency of 70-80% which is slightly lower than fossil fuel burners."
http://www.hrt.msu.edu/energy/pdf/coal%20heat.pdf

A new study has found that wood-burning power plants using trees and other biomass from New England forests releases more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere than coal over time. Mass. state environment officials. Manoment Center for Conservation Sciences,...concludes that the net cumulative emissions of greenhouse gases from replacing coal-fired plants with biomass would be 3 percent greater by 2050 than from using coal to generate electricity. Taken into consideration is the amount of carbon removed from the atmosphere from the regrowth of forests, or "carbon dividends."
http://www.usnews.com
Mass. Study: Wood Power Worse Polluter than Coal, Steve LeBlanc, Associated Press

In Calgary, burning is controlled by statute, only picnic size fires allowed outdoors.
There once were many complaints about fumes from wood-burning fireplaces, but city use of fireplaces has disappeared (In my neighborhood, most houses were built, 50 years ago, with fireplaces which are now unused or have a natural gas burner installation).


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: kendall
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 01:24 PM

Back home the really poor folks burned alders. They would put a bunch of them into the oven to dry and they made a very pleasant odor.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: Deckman
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 02:00 PM

100 years ago, when I was in high school, my brother and I used to clear Alder off land for houses. We then cut the logs 8' long and drove them to an Arlington, Washington specialty mill where they were kiln dried and cut into stock size. Then they were hauled to the "Tacoma Chair Company" where they were made into fine furniture framing. The knickname, at that time, for our "Alder" was "Western Red Maple."

Once kiln dreid and pre-sized, the wood was a very stable furniture wood ... burned great also. bob(deckman)nelson ... who still burns alder today.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 02:46 PM

Beechwood fires are bright and clear
If the logs are kept a year
Chestnut's only good they say
If for long it's stored away
Make a fire of elder tree
Death within your house will be
But ash new or ash old
Is fit for a Queen with crown of gold

Birch and fir logs burn too fast
Blaze up bright and do not last
It is by the Cornish said
Hawthorn bakes the sweetest bread
Elm wood burns like churchyard mould

Even the very flames are cold
But ash green or ash brown
Is fit for a Queen with golden crown

Poplar gives a bitter smoke
Fills your eyes and makes you choke
Apple wood will scent your room
With an incense-like perfume
Oaken logs, if dry and old
Keep away the winter's cold
But ash wet or ash dry
A king shall warm his slippers by


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: Ebbie
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 03:14 PM

In Oregon alder grows to a respectable size and I used to love to split it- it pops right open. I burnt a lot of it, as well as douglas fir.

In the north, here in southeast Alaska, alder is a trash tree. Rarely grows to more than 8 inches or so in diameter and in the forests forms 'alder hells'. Worse than devils club for getting through- too low to go under and too high to step across.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: Mo the caller
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 04:29 PM

Bonnie, I remember singing a song like that in school choir. Not sure of all the words but it was the Irish, not the Cornish who made bread with hawthorn


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: GUEST,foggers
Date: 08 Aug 12 - 07:16 AM

I agree with Richard B; any wood that is free is good for our woodburner!

And as a banjo-player I have to express my surprise that a thread like this on Mudcat has not yet had a single quip about burning banjos.....


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 08 Aug 12 - 08:09 AM

No matter which hardwood or softwood you burn,
Oak, Apple, Rowan or Plane
You will find that when to your grate you return
There is one which will always remain ...




Ash!


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: Lonesome EJ
Date: 08 Aug 12 - 01:22 PM

Here in Colorado
a winter fire is fine
but no need to bother about ash or oak
because all you'll get is pine


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: The Sandman
Date: 08 Aug 12 - 01:26 PM

stop pining.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: GUEST
Date: 09 Aug 12 - 01:22 PM

some years ago I was in Tunisia for a while, and olive wood prunings make a lovely aromatic charcoal for braziers


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: open mike
Date: 09 Aug 12 - 02:05 PM

here oak is preferred
unless you can get manzanita, madrone or eucalyptus which all burn
very hot!


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: Roger the Skiffler
Date: 10 Aug 12 - 12:22 PM

Oeople keep telling me my washboard would make good kindling...

RtS


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: Mo the caller
Date: 10 Aug 12 - 12:33 PM

I thought someone had already posted this poem by Walter de la Mare
maybe it was on the thread in the link.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: GUEST,Blandiver
Date: 10 Aug 12 - 12:52 PM

In a footnote on page 169 of The White Goddess (Faber 1961) Robert Graves credits the log poem / woodcutter's song as as a 'charming though emasculated' version of the Irish Ossianic Song of the Forest Trees, the text of which appears in Standish-O'Grady's The Poem-Book of the Gael which you can find on line, but it's a bit of a faff wading through it, so here it is.

SONG OF THE FOREST TREES

O MAN that for Fergus of the feasts dost kindle fire,
Whether afloat or ashore burn not the king of woods.

Monarch of Innisfail's forests the woodbine is, whom
none may hold captive ;
No feeble sovereign's effort is it to hug all tough trees
in his embrace.

The pliant woodbine if thou burn, wailings for mis-
fortune will abound,
Dire extremity at weapons' points or drowning in great
waves will follow.

Burn not the precious apple-tree of spreading and low-
sweeping bough ;
Tree ever decked in bloom of white, against whose fair
head all men put forth the hand.

The surly blackthorn is a wanderer, a wood that the
artificer burns not ;
Throughout his body, though it be scanty, birds in their
flocks warble.

The noble willow burn not, a tree sacred to poems ;
Within his bloom bees are a-sucking, all love the little
cage.


The graceful tree with the berries, the wizard's tree, the
rowan, burn ;
But spare the limber tree ; burn not the slender hazel.

Dark is the colour of the ash ; timber that makes the
wheels to go ;
Rods he furnishes for horsemen's hands, his form turns
battle into flight.

Tenterhook among woods the spiteful briar is, burn him
that is so keen and green ;
He cuts, he flays the foot, him that would advance he
forcibly drags backward.

Fiercest heat-giver of all timber is green oak, from him
none may escape unhurt ;
By partiality for him the head is set on aching, and by
his acrid embers the eye is made sore.

Alder, very battle-witch of all woods, tree that is hottest
in the fight
Undoubtedly burn at thy discretion both the alder and
whitethorn.

Holly, burn it green ; holly, burn it dry ;
Of all trees whatsoever the critically best is holly.
Elder that hath tough bark, tree that in truth hurts
sore;
Him that furnishes horses to the armies from the sidh
burn so that he be charred.

The birch as well, if he be laid low, promises abiding
fortune ;
Burn up most sure and certainly the stalks that bear the
constant pods.

Suffer, if it so please thee, the russet aspen to come head-
long down ;
Burn, be it late or early, the tree with the palsied branch.

Patriarch of long-lasting woods is the yew, sacred to
feasts, as is well-known ;
Of him now build ye dark-red vats of goodly size.

Ferdedh, thou faithful one, wouldst thou but do my
behest :
To thy soul as to thy body, O man, 'twould work ad-
vantage.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: GUEST,999
Date: 10 Aug 12 - 03:05 PM

"And as a banjo-player I have to express my surprise that a thread like this on Mudcat has not yet had a single quip about burning banjos....."


Got a light?


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: ChanteyLass
Date: 10 Aug 12 - 09:57 PM

This thread makes me think of this verse from Dillon Bustin's song More Wood;
   When the kindling is dwindling, the bottom logs get soggy
   Those ricks of sticks and racks and stacks
   It makes you wonder where they go and barnfuls of armfuls
   They only last a week or so
   And then you'll be hurting for wood.
   Well the sassafras it burns too fast,
   It starts the fire but never lasts
   And swamp oak likes to smoke you blow it till you think you'll choke.
   But hickory is just the tree to remind you of the ecstasy
   Of having a pile of good wood, I said ...
The lyrics to the whole song are here.
http://www.tabcrawler.com/2119151/unknown/more-wood-lyrics


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: GUEST,John Foxen
Date: 11 Aug 12 - 01:22 PM

And going off topic (but only by one letter) Australian bard Phyl Lobl has written a fine song about the types of wood for turning.
The Woodturners Love Song


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: Rumncoke
Date: 11 Aug 12 - 05:08 PM

Make your fire of Hickory
Hickory ash or oak
don't use no green nor rotten wood
or they'll get you by the smoke
As you lay there by the juniper
Whilst the moon is bright
Watch those jugs a filling
In the pale moonlight


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: GUEST,999
Date: 11 Aug 12 - 05:48 PM

Party spoiler: Sorry.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: The Sandman
Date: 12 Aug 12 - 05:14 AM

999,
my experience is different, firstly cypressus is awful, full of sticky resin, and needs not one year but three, next, ash and holly can be burned green, without ill effects on the chimney, which is useful if you are short of wood. thirdly gorse or furze is very good for getting a range up quickly, chestnut in my experience if seasoned is not very good.
most wood is ok if left for a year apart from cypressus, but some woods burn better than others, I go by my own experience


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: GUEST,Blandiver
Date: 12 Aug 12 - 05:48 AM

Beech logs for wintertime

I recall one in a village I lived in long ago, one of the huge old beech trees shed a massive limb one night in a storm which several of us set to work on with a variety of saws. An awkward wood for splitting & chopping, it got a few of us through a particularly bitter winter. A friend of ours from the Tyne Valley folk scene even wrote a song about it - Carole I think her name was but it was such a long time ago I can't remember. I do remember her husband was a dulcimer playing copper (Dave?) AND they had a Raymond Greenoaken broadside of The Hexhamshire Lass framed on their living room wall (as I recall it illustrated a hapless suitor stuck in the mire as his lass looked on with wry amusement). Happy days!

Our log stove has resided in the in-laws' garage since moving rom the Durham countryside to Lancashire Fylde coast 5 years ago. It's a long term project to open up the chimney breast in the back room and install it, but when you're living in an urban environment you quickly lose the urgency on such matters - at least I do. I used to love gathering and sawing up firewood & piling it up in the nook, but these days I'm quite happy with the convenience of gas central heating.

One day, I hope, we'll get back to the country, but the seaside's just fine for now.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: The Sandman
Date: 13 Aug 12 - 03:21 AM

by cypressus , i meant leylandi


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 13 Aug 12 - 07:03 AM

Guitars burn pretty good, double basses even better, too much metal on banjoes though.

Martin Carthy and Bob Dylan once chopped up a piano to burn, that's pretty cool.

Dave H


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Subject: RE: Folklore: firewood that is good to burn
From: GUEST,Dave Illingworth
Date: 13 Aug 12 - 04:51 PM

Alder is fine, but do not confuse with Elder wood, which is useless.
Silver Birch bark great for getting initial flame going.


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