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Discussion Starter #1
Though it's based on astrology Almanacs have been refined through human experience. You have seen the charts in there where it gives the best time to plant crops bale hay or harvest potatoes and there is a best time for cutting firewood. Cut firewood whenever you get a chance, by all means, but is there a time it drys better than others like it says on the chart? If so how can it be explained?

I always try to cut my wood a year ahead. I like to cut & split starting about Mid December till the middle of March.

:D Al
 

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Dad always wanted to cut firewood from trees that were downed a year prior, but that were held off the ground so they would dry and not rot. We would cut the limbs and trunks to length around September, and split what needed to be split on the spot. We would cut split and haul firewood until the last part of November. Dad always said you get two heats out of the wood by starting early.
 

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We cut when we had the chance, no matter what time of the year it was. Mostly we cut from the middle of Oct until the trees started budding, but if dad found out there was some clearing somewhere, he would alwasy stop and ask if we could come in on Saturdays. We also cut for my grandparents, so we had to double just about everything, and we most of the time cut a load on Frdiay evening, and one on Saturday! Gramps decided he didnt want to burn wood any more, but we still cut 2 loads a weekend, when there wasnt some crop to deal with. Our barn was like 15 X 45, 12ft high, and it was full by mid March, so we stopped for the year, unless Dad came across another site being cleared,then it just sat outside.
 

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We only cut wood in winter when the sap is down for log building, but firewood is dead so it should not matter. For us it is easier to move around in the bush in winter. Paul
 

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We cut here in the fall and winter. We clean up all the dead falls from the prior year.
 

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I am a horrible example of how to do firewood but my friend Gary did it the right way. Gary had a full time job that generated a lot of overtime for him in the busy summer season so he mostly took compensating time off in the other three seasons. Besides hunting, fishing and gardening he did firewood for three households. His schedule in the late winter early spring was very flexible so he fell and blocked after the traditional late crust formed on the deep snow. This allowed him to move around easily but not be in danger of dulling his saw on the ground. At this time he would also pile the blocks up in convenient piles to be split on cold mornings after the worst of the snow was gone. When the frost was gone but before the blackflies hit he would return and pile the split wood. Those piles then sat for about 16 months and were moved to his basement storeage in the fall before the second year for burning. Many a year I helped him sweep his steel chimney but we rarely got more than a handful of soot out of it. Gary is now in his seventies and with his parents and sister gone he only cuts firewood for his own household. He has switched to loads of logs and a hydraulic splitter but he still does wood when the days are cool before the bugs and lets it season for 18 months.
 

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We cut anytime there is an opportunity for free wood. Just two evenings ago a buddy had me come and drop a 20" sycamore next to his new shed and a dead 36" Chinkapin Oak behind it. I figure the more free wood I get, the longer the growth on my own property will sustain me in the future. It ain't too pleasant cutting in the 90 degree temp range (plus the midwest humidity) but if we don't get it then, it'll go in the burn pit on the construction sites. My brother, two of my nephews and my son are operators for a midsize construction company that builds bridges, sewer treatment plants, lakes etc. and we use their crawlers and track hoes with skidding tongs to load logs off the sites. Line 'em up in the flats, top them then stump them, then come in with the track hoe and load them like toothpicks with the skidding tongs and a steel choker shackled to the bucket. We haul typically up to 26' in length. The last lake turned out to be 80 acres underwater. Lotta wood there to be had. About 20 guys hauled out of that one, smiling all the way, even though it WAS through the summer. Sure must be nice sitting in the air conditioned cabs, however, not being operators, my son-in-law and myself are the slobs climbing around topping, stumping and loading. :? :? Its all good, though.
 

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If i was using live trees I felled them when the leaves were on, the leaves would pull out a lot of moisture. Cut in rounds after leaves all died. Split as soon after cut as I could because it split easier. If the logs were dried already, I liked to cut it in the fall after crops were in. Cooler that way....James
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The opening of this thread asked a question about cutting fire wood by signs like planting crops/garden and harvesting.
Doesn't any one pay attention to signs when cutting fire wood?

:D Al
 

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alleyyooper said:
The opening of this thread asked a question about cutting fire wood by signs like planting crops/garden and harvesting.
Doesn't any one pay attention to signs when cutting fire wood?

:D Al
Not at all... If the wood is free and needs cutting now, the signs don't mean anything to me. ;) Back on the home place, Dad did everything under the sun by the sign of the moon...pruning grapes, planting crop, cutting pigs etc. He even scheduled his own surgery to the correct sign so he wouldn't bleed as much. Religiously checked the almanac to tell me if I'd catch fish or not. Certain woods he would not cut unless it was the right time of year because of the bores.
 

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[quote="missouri massey man Not at all... If the wood is free and needs cutting now, the signs don't mean anything to me. ;) Back on the home place, Dad did everything under the sun by the sign of the moon...pruning grapes, planting crop, cutting pigs etc. He even scheduled his own surgery to the correct sign so he wouldn't bleed as much. Religiously checked the almanac to tell me if I'd catch fish or not. Certain woods he would not cut unless it was the right time of year because of the bores.[/quote]


My Grandpa was the same way, didn't do anything without checking the almanac. Grandma had her own ways, handed down from her ancestors. But when she moved from Kansas to Oregon, gardening was all different and she learned new ways. I used too do a lot by the signs, found it makes little or no difference. Things are so different now, hybrid seeds, new technology, quick, easy fixes. Years past it made things easier and better if done at the right time. Not saying it is better now, not at all. There were reasons then, that still work well today, just don't make as much difference now. I like a lot of the old ways but the sign of the moon....not so much. I have my own ways, I like to grow my food without commercial fertilizer or pesticides, Plant way earlier, use hoops and a greenhouse. I use companion planting to help with bugs and diseases but I don't plant by the moon....James
 
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