We recently moved and there are several piles of wood on the property that I
intend to burn. I'm assuming they are piles from trees that were cut down and
then left to rot. From the surrounding trees, I would say that it is maple.
We live in the northeast and get alot of snow in the winter.
It is soft and mushy and it might not even burn without some accelerant. What
I want to estimate is the amount of ash that will result, so I can get an idea
of what to do with the ash. I have the room to simply bury it, but that would
depend on the volume of ash.
I know this is an open ended question, but I am just looking for an educated
guess. Would you say that the amount of ash would be about 1/3 the amount of
wood?? 1/4 the amount???
Also, other than burning, is there a better way of eliminating a pile of wood.
I thought about renting a chipper and composting the chips.
A chipper is a good idea but it depends on how big the stuff
is. Forestry/pruning guys drag around a chipper that can
tear up 4-5" diameter stuff, smaller chippers can only got
up to 2-1/2 to 3" and home type chippers are probably
limited to 1-1/2" diameter stuff.
The amount of ash left depends on how hot you get the fire.
If you burn it you probably want to wait until past the
middle of the summer. I don't have any figures but based on
what I have seen, the ash remaining shouldn't be more than
10 percent of the original and most likely much less than
that. Pile of stumps and trash wood 8-10 feet high usually
burn down to less than 6" Punky wood will burn to
The amount of non-combustible material does not decrease by bacterial
Waiting until the rest of the woods or the meadow is dry is asking for
Best time to burn is now, where the snow will control any problems, but that
would take some prior planning. Elevating the center of the stack, then a
covering to shed the bulk of the snow should get you a dry interior to heap
the wet upon. If you're hot to trot and don't want bonfires next winter,
cover now, wait until the grass greens up, and it's raining before lighting
1-2% maximum ash volume, though unconsumed carbon may add to that, and if
you live in NE with acid granitic soil, you'll want to spread it about to
sweeten things and promote growth.
Based on what I see in my fireplace, my guess would be more on the order of 2
or 3 percent.
Doug Miller (alphageek-at-milmac-dot-com)
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The world doesn't really need all that smoke.
I hire a chipper with a 12" throat, but it's about $100/hr with a crew. The
chips are great on paths and in the garden, but your chips may break down
very rapidly if the wood is soft.
If you really want it to burn well, you'll have to spread it out so the sun
gets on it. Wet wood in a pile may never dry.
How about spreading it out and letting nature have it back, which would help
your other trees.
If you burn, just spread the ash around the area. It will disappear.
On 03 Jan 2005 05:04:43 GMT, email@example.com (Rileyesi) wrote:
Google search... wood ash content over 500,000 hits but the first hit
Ash content will be less than 2% and depends on the temperature of the
burn. If you burn a large pile you will destroy organic material in
the top soil. Don't plan on growing grass there until you replenish
the consumed organics.
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