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Locust is Good Burning Wood?

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by velvetfoot, Mar 23, 2006.

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  1. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

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    My wood guy says he can get some locust. Not sure of the variety, honey or black, not that I can tell the difference. A search shows black locust as a good wood to burn, but are there any things I should look for, like another species that looks like locust, etc.

    PS: Can anyone point me to a good picture book for tree identification? Thanks again.

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  2. berlin

    berlin New Member

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  3. Mike Wilson

    Mike Wilson New Member

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    I burn about 60% black locust here, all locally harvested. It burns well, and long. Some say its the closest wood to coal, and when you see it burn, you'll understand why. It retains its shape during the burn process much longer than other woods, including oak. It also gets this jet black textured finish, which it holds while it off-gasses. Definitely a different black look than oak and the rest of them. I load the firebox up at night with locust, and have plenty of large coals 8 hours later. If you can get it, burn it. Oh, it smells like crap when burning, so close up the stove and get the secondary going as fast as possible.

    Its known as the shipmast tree, as that is what they used it for years ago. It is basically a tree-weed. If you clear a field around here its the first to invade the area. It grows very quickly, and can shoot up new trees from its roots. Definitely not a landscape tree... so BURN IT!

    -- Mike
  4. Corey

    Corey Minister of Fire

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    I "third" that motion. Good burnin' wood. Have one in my back yard, too. Provides a nice filtered shade during the summer, but looses 85 trillion tiny leaves in the fall.

    Corey
  5. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

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    Thanks everyone.
  6. wahoowad

    wahoowad Minister of Fire

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    Great burning wood. Make sure it is seasoned.
  7. babalu87

    babalu87 New Member

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    I'm infested with little ones
    They do grow FAST , maybe i'll let a few grow.
    The damn thorns are enough of a deterrent to keep me from cutting them down!

    Thanks for the ID, I had no idea what they were
  8. Mike Wilson

    Mike Wilson New Member

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    Babalu, kill them now. Seriously, once established they are almost impossible to remove. Hit them with round up, strip a bark ring off them, or just pull them out of the ground. Their roots also do considerable damage, to driveways, etc.

    -- Mike
  9. MountainStoveGuy

    MountainStoveGuy New Member

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    isnt there a type of locust that has thorns are its trunk, and a altogether different type that has it on its branches (which i think is refferd to as hedge?)
  10. Mike Wilson

    Mike Wilson New Member

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    The Black Locust we have here have thorns on the trunk and branches when they are young. After a year or so the thorns on the trunk and older branches fall off, but the new branches and shoots all have thorns on them.

    -- Mike
  11. GRBW1

    GRBW1 New Member

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    Easy on the Black Locust now. It's about the best wood there is for wooden boats. It rots readily when alive, but as rot resistant as cedar when seasoned. Also, seasoned locust is near impossible to plane. Harder, heavier and stronger than White Oak, but doesn't split as readily as oak. It varnishes up real nice, with a nice yellow sheen to it.

    Yes, a Black locust stem, grown to a nice sweep, parting the seas, first to meet the oncoming rush of water.

    Now if only they grew as big as oaks.
  12. count brewski

    count brewski New Member

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    the bark, which comes off easily after seasoning, makes wonderful kindling, as all Md. country boys know - hoard it like gold
  13. bruce56bb

    bruce56bb New Member

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    this pic is representative of the locust trees around here.

    Attached Files:

  14. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

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    I've never seen anything like that around here.
  15. Metal

    Metal Minister of Fire

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    I've got about 5-10 of the ones like Bruce's pic in my backyard, definately not good climbers. I have knocked all the thorns off as high as I can reach. I walked through the leaves back there a few weeks ago and one of those thorns went through my shoe, luckily I reacted quick enough that it didn't crucify me.
  16. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

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    Where do you guys live anyway? I've never seen that up here in upstate NY.
  17. bruce56bb

    bruce56bb New Member

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    kansas
  18. berlin

    berlin New Member

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    I've seen a few of those trees in NY, definately not black locust though. the other locusts are worthless compared to the black locust, wood is not even close to the same hardness.
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