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Thoughts on seasoning Aspen

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by BoilerMan, Mar 17, 2013.

  1. BoilerMan

    BoilerMan Minister of Fire

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    Northern Maine
    I've been cleaning up the land some and have a few dozen Aspen (trembeling/quacking) some call all Aspen Poplar. Anyhow, it seems to take FOREVER to season, especially the older stuff with thick furrowed bark. And man does this stuff stink! The way this takes on water every time it rains and gets very dark after it's been stacked for a few months and is still very heavy, seems like it'll rot before it's dry. It is all c/s/s in a seperate pile for shoulder season in the LR Quadrafire or campfire wood.

    Any thoughts, other than put it in the wood shed when I build one.
    TS

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  2. Beetle-Kill

    Beetle-Kill Minister of Fire

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    I'd treat it like anything else, CSS for a year and it should be good to go (with a few exceptions-oak, etc.)
    I burn a lot of Aspen, some splits are very light, others quite heavy even though they've been in the stacks for 3 years.
  3. Adabiviak

    Adabiviak Feeling the Heat

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    Sierra Nevadas, California
    Yeah, I don't know what it is about that stuff, but it seems to take longer to really season. I have had some seasoning for a few years now, and the bark is still on tight. When it's fresh cut, I've had water splash out of the ends when I split it. There were green sprouts coming out of the bark on the rounds throughout the first year.

    Also, the smell... while it does put off heat, it does reek pretty bad. I'll usually pass, unless I'm strapped for wood.
  4. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    I never go out of my way to get poplar . . . it's more of a junk wood . . . a soft hardwood that burns up pretty quickly. That said, if there is a poplar in my way I'll grab it, cut it, split it and stack it for a year outside. It then either gets used as camp wood or I'll stick it in the woodshed for another year or so . . . but only use it for the shoulder season fires.
  5. Jon1270

    Jon1270 Minister of Fire

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    Do you have the stacks covered, or are they completely exposed to the weather? I wonder whether stacking it bark-down might help it shed rain more effectively.
  6. thewoodlands

    thewoodlands Minister of Fire

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    It does smell. I learned after my first year burning it, when you're splitting it remove the bark, it should season in one year if it's stacked in a spot with plenty of wind & sun.

    This is the last one I did, we had some bigger ones up top that had the thicker bark.
    http://www.hearth.com/talk/threads/bigtooth-aspen.89554/#post-1166963
  7. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    I'd consider top-covering it......
    I've never burned any of it before......I pass it up.
  8. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    I've cut lots of it over they years and it dries fast. Burns fast too. I can remember one year cutting one down and burning it the following fall. It was really dry. Simply stacked in the wind and Mother Nature cooperates.

    I would not stack it bark down though. Bark up usually works best but then, we have some every which way and have no problems.

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