Apple wood is a great firewood choice for people who are looking for cleaner, less smoky fires. Apple firewood is especially prized for its ability to add flavor to meats.
Is apple wood good firewood to burn other than for smoking meats? Yes, apple is good firewood for fire pits, fireplaces, campfires, and stoves.
This article will explore how apple wood burns and give you tips on where to find it. If you're looking for a good firewood that's environmentally friendly, then apple firewood might be the one.
What is apple wood good for
Apple wood is a type of firewood that is usually used to cook food. Apple wood has a high heating value and it doesn't produce as many sparks as other types of firewood. Apple wood also doesn't produce as much smoke as other types of firewood, so it can be used inside the home.
How to select the best apple firewood
For a homeowner interested in using apple wood as a source of firewood, it is important to know if the local area has an abundant supply or not. Apple trees will need some room to grow and mature but they also need to be protected from harsh winter weather such as wind, ice, and frosts which can kill the blossoms on new buds.
Apple trees don't grow very big and they grow slowly so the amount of wood that can be harvested from a mature tree is relatively small. Apple trees may also have hollow spots in their trunks or rotten cores inside which are both signs of a tree that is dying. The rotten spots should be cut off of the firewood before it is stacked for seasoning.
There is also another way to harvest apple wood which goes by many names depending on where you live; it's called coppicing or pollarding. By cutting off the top of the tree each year for several years in a row, the tree will grow new limbs and produce more wood. The parts that are cut off can be split and seasoned for burning as firewood.
Why should you use apple wood as your fuel source
Apple wood is a great fuel source for three reasons. First, apple wood burns much cleaner than other fuels, which leaves less ash residue behind. Second, it can be burned in both open fires and stoves, so you have more options for use. Third, it's an easy to find fuel source almost anywhere in North America. Fourth, it can be used any time of year, in any temperature.
The different types of apple trees and what they are typically used for
Most apple tree varieties have a flowering time of late spring and have a large number of flowers that are usually white or pink in color. Apple trees grow to a height of 6 - 30 feet and have a lifespan of about 30 years, depending on the variety.
The types of apple trees include:
- Malus domestica is the scientific name for apple trees. There are thousands of different types available but most all share similar traits and characteristics that make them good firewood choices. It includes about 50–60 different cultivars of apples including MacIntosh, Red Delicious, Granny Smith, Baldwin etc.
Making good quality charcoal from this type of apple wood will take a couple hours longer than other woods; but it should be worth the time because it burns very well with an intense heat that lasts quite some time. The wood is very strong and has a tight grain making it valuable for woodworking purposes
- Malus sylvestris: commonly known as the crab apple, is a species of flowering plant in the family Rosaceae. It is native to Europe and western Asia east to eastern Asia. Crabapple wood can be used for small items such as walking sticks or tool handles because it splits easily without cracking much. The wood's density also makes it suitable for steam bending
- Malus prunifolia : This type of crab apple tree is great for making firewood, and can burn hot and long. It is native to China. It is used as an ornamental tree and as a pollinator for apple orchards. The fruit can be eaten raw or cooked. Malus prunifolia are small trees, so you won't get much firewood from one. As firewood, though, malus prunifolia makes a beautiful flame and smells nice.
- Malus pumila Mill: known as Paradise apple tree. It is a short tree, usually with a crooked trunk. It is often eaten raw or cooked into desserts.
- Malus sieversii: is native to Kazakstan. It grows to about 39 feet and its leaves turn red in the fall. Malus sieversii makes good firewood if you can get some. Malus sieversii is an ancestor to today's domestic apples.
General maintenance tips for using apple firewood
It is important to note that apple wood fires are just as good in size for cooking as cherry or maple wood. Apple firewood is more dense than some other types, but that density is not really an issue when it comes to cooking with this type of firewood--automatically, it means higher-quality heat and less smoke.
There are some great benefits of using apple wood for your fires:
- It burns well and produces a bright and long-lasting flame
- It creates a good heat
- It has a pleasant smell when burning, which some people find to be sweet and fruity.
However, apple wood is not as easy to light or keep lit as other types of firewood out there due to its density--it requires more effort than pine or cherry and may require the use of newspaper and kindling for initial help in lighting.
The best approach to keep apple firewood burning is to use a medium dense or low dense firewood in combination. Alder, aspen, or silver maple would be good firewoods to mix with apple wood.
Tips on how to store apple firewood properly
When storing apple firewood in a log pile, it is best to stack the logs in groups of two or three. This will allow for better airflow and help with moisture control. Your apple firewood should be covered on top, but not completely covered on the sides. Covering the sides will prevent air from flowing around the firewood.
It is also recommended to store your firewood away from buildings or other structures that are susceptible to damage if exposed to fires. It is also important to keep them at least five feet from any combustible material such as hay piles, your house, garden furniture, etc.
Use caution when piling your wood close to fences because the sap on the wood could cause the fence's paint to crack which will eventually lead to expensive repairs.
Safety precautions when using apple firewood
Other than your general fire safety precautions, there aren't any special instructions for burning apple firewood. Apple wood burns slow and doesn't pop much, so it is a very safe wood to burn.
Is apple firewood hardwood or softwood?
Apple firewood is hardwood. Its Janka hardness rating is 1730 pounds-force. Apple wood is very dense. Apple firewood has a moderate amount of moisture when it is green. Apple firewood weighs about 4800 lbs per cord when it is green and about 3800 lbs per cord when it is dry.
Apple firewood BTUs
Apple firewood burns hot. It gives off about the same amount of heat as oak, mulberry, and beech. Apple firewood produces 27 million BTUs per cord.
Splitting and seasoning apple firewood
Splitting apple logs into firewood is not difficult. It can take a little work, but it is worth it. Dry apple firewood for at least 12 months to get it dry enough to burn. At this point of dryness, apple firewood may still be hard to keep burning. Mix it with some other faster burning wood like poplar or alder to establish a good fire.
To season apple firewood completely, it can take up to 2 years of drying.
Burning apple firewood
You can burn apple firewood any time of year. It produces enough heat to warm you through winter nights. It also makes a nice clean heat for cooking or smoking meats.
Because apple burns hot, it is probably in your best interest to burn it during colder months if you are going to use it as a heat source for your home. The one issue you will have if it is not dried well is your fire may not stay lit all night.
Apple firewood produces really nice coals. If you start your fire early in the night, the coals may be enough to keep you warm until the morning.
One cord of apple firewood is comparable to 200 gallons of heating oil.
Does apple firewood make sparks
One of the benefits of apple firewood is it doesn't produce many sparks. Even when apple firewood is not very dry, it won't produce a lot of sparks. When apple firewood is seasoned well, it usually doesn't make any sparks.
How much does apple firewood cost
Apple firewood costs about the same as other hardwoods. Expect to pay between $200 and $400 per cord. Remember, when you are buying apple firewood at these prices, it should be seasoned and ready to burn.
Is apple firewood good to burn in a fireplace, fire pit, stove, or campfire
Apple firewood is good to burn in any of your favorite fire containers. Burn small logs in your fire pit and campfire unless you want a fire that will last a long time. If you choose to put big pieces of wood in your fire pit or campfire, you may find yourself having to douse partially burnt apple firewood with water.
Burn apple firewood in a fireplace or stove when you want a long, slow burn. This is best during the late fall and winter time.
How does apple firewood smell when it is burned
Want your home to smell good? Burn apple firewood in your stove or fireplace. Apple is one of the best smelling firewoods your can burn. It has a rich, sweet aroma that will have you wanting more.
Does apple firewood smoke
Apple firewood doesn't smoke a lot. It will smoke more when it is wet. This is the reason you are encouraged to soak your apple wood chips in water before smoking meats.
Is apple wood good firewood summary
Apple firewood has some good applications in your heating needs. It can be used to cook meats, heat your home, and enjoyed in a fun fire in your fire pit or campfire. Apple firewood does present some challenges when trying to burn it. To solve these issues, split the wood into smaller pieces and season well. The longer you dry apple firewood, the easier it will burn.
Learn more about the best firewood to burn on bigyardfun.com