Sunday, December 15, 2013

Sunday Reading - Winters Alot of Work

I had planned on finishing up the chapter in my fiction I had been working on for today but this snowstorm kinda set me back a bit. The temps rose today into at least the upper 30's if not lower 40's but with all the melting snow it was really too muddy to attempt any wood cutting. I have a few small trees here and there I could have cut up but I went ahead and decided to split a load instead.

There were several large chunks of trees already loaded up on the truck because I had put them there for weight yesterday. Mostly these were the last remains of trees I cut down last year and even one from the year before. Big, massive trunks from tree varieties that like to fork low and early and are a real pain to split. More than a few of them came from other people who burn wood as well.

I have found that most people around here who loudly proclaim they split everything by hand are usually more than happy to offer me a chunk or two of some knot infested old trunk on a fairly frequent schedule. I am always glad to take the thing off their hands as I have yet to find a chunk the splitter couldn't push it's way through. Still even with a splitter these pieces are a bear to man handle until you get them split down to size.

So since it is too wet to cut and I had a good amount of old stuff plus the promise of plenty more big stuff once it dries out, having six big locust trunks waiting,  I decided to jump early this year and split a load. Usually I don't start the splitting process until January but this year has been colder than normal complete with a couple of early storms besides and my ready to burn racks are now about half empty already.

It never ceases to amaze me how fast you can fill a truck bed when splitting wood. Only a couple of big trunk pieces goes a long, long way when you get down to it. I barely made a dent in the stuff I have stacked for splitting, in fact I don't think I got passed the old stuff into even this year's haul yet.

After all that splitting it was time to clean the ashes. I emptied the fourth 7 gallon can out this afternoon into the garden and raised bed area. That is about twice as many ashes as I usually put out by this time.

Between the cold and the extra wood cutting and splitting I have yet to get out and do any work in the shop this year. No reloading or bee box building at all. I really need to get on that soon.

Keep Prepping Everyone!!!


  1. I had to take down an enormous Blackjack Oak a couple of years ago for safety reasons. I measured the height of a lawn chair, then cut it into equal leingth sections and put em around the firepit. They are fairly comfy chairs that don't sprout leggs and walk off, like the lawn chairs do. I could probably make em into really comfy chairs by taking a scorp to em but that stuff is so hard it will be a real chore and I keep putting it off. Anyway just a thought on some alternative uses for the big stuff.


  2. buddy - you sound like, if nothing else, you are getting your exercise and fresh air - both very good things at your late age in life - bahahahah! sorry, couldn't help myself!

    your friend,

    1. K: Keep laughing. By the time your a teenager, your old to somebody, and Father Time just keeps creeping along.

  3. If you grow raspberries give them a double dose of ash, they really thrive on it!

  4. Still got all your fingers?

    There's an article on bee keeping in the new Backwoods Home. I haven't read it yet but the lead in looked interesting.

  5. I thought this link from OSU was interesting. Never thought about the point about mixing of fertilizer types.

  6. I split by hand and don't usually have much trouble at the base of the tree but once in awhile there are bad places on up in the trunk where 5 limbs come out or something that won't split easy. I can split with wedges but usually just leave them laying as the results don't stack well and just don't fit in the furnace. Most of our trees are pretty straight. Also I split in the woods so I know which end is down or up, they split better most of the time from the trunk end.


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