Is Willow even worth burning?
April 7, 2007 4:52 PM   Subscribe

We heat with wood and our neighbor has offered a bunch of fallen Willow on his property. We would have to cut and haul it about a tenth of a mile. It's free but I hear it gunks the flue and burns on contact. Is it worth it? Anyone with experience burning Wilow?
posted by Toekneesan to Home & Garden (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
You've probably already read this, but New Mexico State University says that it needs to be well dried before you burn it.
posted by saladin at 5:00 PM on April 7, 2007

if you don't need much heat it's okay. Willow basically has one of the lowest amounts of available heat energy when you burn it. this page has a table showing what types of wood have more or less available heat energy.
posted by cosmicbandito at 5:05 PM on April 7, 2007

We burned a lot of willow one winter. I would burn it when we were home and I could keep adding more to the fire, it burned so fast. But hey, it was free heat. At night I would toss on some denser wood before gong to bed.
posted by LarryC at 5:53 PM on April 7, 2007

Low density, lights up very easily, burns hot and fast. It really does need to be well dried before you burn it, and it takes a fair while to dry; willow is a very wet wood. If you burn it wet, it will definitely gunk things up. Burnt dry, the only problem is the copious amounts of ash it makes.
posted by flabdablet at 8:57 PM on April 7, 2007

Have you considered other uses for the willow? April's issue of Mother Earth News had an article about using pliable branches for fences and trellises with wattle techniques. Not sure if it's your cup of tea or suitable for your homestead--just thought I'd throw that out there. I've used willow in basketry--it's a really easy and fun material for making things.
posted by bonobo at 2:46 PM on April 28, 2007

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