Juniper, cedar, and other shrubs/trees of that family all have a similar
red heartwood and white sapwood - and there are some pretty odd trees in
AU that may look like that - beware though, my experience is that almost
anything native to Australia is poisonous - beware of the dust until you
know what it is (the bark looks like juniper to me)
I agree with the others who suggest that it is eastern red cedar... juniper.
I don't think I've ever seen eastern red cedar intentionally used for
firewood but I do recall seeing such trees burn. A fire ripped through
forests and fields near my childhood home and I recall how the cedars
crackled as they exploded in a ball of flames. It was a memorable
RE pens, I've seen pens turned from this wood and they looked nice. However,
the wood is so soft that after a bit of use they looked beat up. One fellow
kind of solved that problem by finishing them with a thin variety of CA glue
which soaked in and basically plasticized the wood. I imagine that thinned
lacquer would do the same thing given enough coats.
Absolutely cedar makes good kindling and tinder... Not so good for firewood
though as it burns fast and pitch pockets pop... definitely don't want the
greens in the fire!
When camping involved cooking over fires (vs. the single burner stove I use
now) I would pull cedar bark off trees, shred it up, and use it for tinder.
Found nothing better.
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