Willow Wood??

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Old John, Aug 23, 2006.

  1. Old John

    Old John Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Hi Y'all,

    We got this beautiful little place 3 years ago. We love it out here.
    As part of the Ongoing Project, of further Beautifying and making it
    more usable, I'm cleaning a lot of trees, some of them big trees, from
    around the pond. And, of course to make it easier to fish. I've had
    to clear out areas before you could cast a line, into the water. And,
    the fishing is great.

    Here's the questions............
    Is Willow Wood good for anything?
    Will it make adequate firewood, after it has dried sufficiently?
    Would it last, if it was used to build things with?
    Could I even Carve it?

    It appears rather soft & light when dry. Can I used it for Anything,
    useful?
    Or, should I use it for filling up ditches?
    Is it even good for that? Would it rot out too quickly?

    Thanks, for any answers you can give me.
    I've got some trees that are 12 to 16" in diameter.
    I hate to just put it in a pile & burn it all up.
    Waste Not, Want Not!

    Thanks again..............
     
  2. Alex

    Alex Well-Known Member

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    • Bean and pea poles (1" to 2" with little branches at the top -- works great) using the dry poles
    • all kinds of furniture from the not-dry smaller pieces, 'easy' to bend and work into shape, apparently (I have thought about Willow and Poplar furniture -- other things I want to do first)
    • firewood ok
    • carving good
    • the Red-Willow bases and roots when removed, dried, ground, sanded, and highly varnished are interesting, have seen them up here as an underside of a landing with 1" thick glass on top so you could see the Willow as you went up the strairs, in a 55,000 ft2, $13,000,000 log house (construction cost only of the logs)
    • Same big-log-cabin contractor used Red-Willow brnaches, ground, sanded and varnished as the uprights for the long winding stair rails
    • Big clumpy Willows in wet areas are bad, worse in the field, and they grow from the smallest piece of root or branch
    • the bark is a natural rooting agent, use for transplanting in a mixture
    • Isn't asprin or something like it in Willow root or bark also?

    Willows are bad when you don't want them.

    Try to Enjoy them,

    Alex
     

  3. MELOC

    MELOC Master Of My Domain

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    like any wood it will burn. it doesn't last very long and makes a good bit of ash. i have some huge trunks that fell over and will not die, lol. i would love to give them away.

    i think they would be good for carving. i wish i knew a carver who wanted some big stuff.
     
  4. Shepherd

    Shepherd Well-Known Member

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    Yes, I've heard weeping willow bark has the components in it for pain relief.
    You can also use willow branches for fishing poles, I'm told.

    I'd make sure I left one or two weeping willows on the property. I've heard you can cut off a branch, stick it into the ground and it will root before long.
     
  5. Country Doc

    Country Doc Well-Known Member

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    Asprin comes from willow bark. I agree on the firewood- does spark some also. Bean poles and willow furniture about it for uses. Asprin is so cheap why boil the bark, chew it etc?
     
  6. tamatik

    tamatik Well-Known Member

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    google.."willow walking stick" and you can see how nice they r polished up
    Gord in BC
     
  7. jeff caldwell

    jeff caldwell Well-Known Member

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    seen some nice beds and chairs that the amish made from willow.
     
  8. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

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    We use the larger trunks as firewood. The smaller trunks and limbs are used in the garden for bean poles, fencing, etc.
     
  9. Highground

    Highground Well-Known Member

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    Willows? Cut 'em down and burn every one of 'em. :flame:
    Me and my cousins had our -----e$ whipped with a willow switch so many times as kids I can't stand the site of 'em.
    Burn 'em I say!!!! :grump:
     
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  10. MELOC

    MELOC Master Of My Domain

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    ROFL! :)
     
  11. PyroDon

    PyroDon Well-Known Member

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    Willow makes great charcoal for making back powder and rockets.
    the charcoal sells for $3-5 a pound . :)
    makes decent rustic chairs too.
     
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  12. Shepherd

    Shepherd Well-Known Member

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    ROFL - boy do I remember that!
     
  13. Freeholder

    Freeholder Well-Known Member

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    It can be used for making baskets (the thin branches). And in England willow was one of the trees that used to be coppiced (cut off and let grow back into a bushy head of whips). The coppiced wood had all kinds of uses: firewood (and charcoal as someone mentioned); baskets; portable fencing called hurdles; the wattles for wattle and daub housing; livestock feed (goats love it); bee skeps; all kind of things.

    Kathleen
     
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  14. treefrog

    treefrog Well-Known Member

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    charcoal made from willow wood is the preferred kind of charcoal for making black powder. the foxfire books say it is best because it has the smallest portion of ash content.

    pax
    t.f.
     
  15. Jolly

    Jolly Well-Known Member

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    If your trees are big enough....

    It makes georgeous interior paneling. Cut the boards a bit oversize, kiln dry or air dry 1 yr/inch thickness. Run 'em through a planar and cut a rabet on the sides for a nice tight fit, although you'll probably want a small piece to act as a "batten".

    The natural wood has nice green streaks that can be clear poly'ed or a bit of thin green stain can really "pop" them out.
     
  16. Dave S.

    Dave S. Well-Known Member

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    Willow charcoal was also used for the "chalk" in early chalk lines becuase it was easy to grind into a powder. May also be why it was used for gunpowder.
     
  17. silvergirl

    silvergirl Well-Known Member

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    White willow (Salix albae) is the variety rich in natural aspirin. Do a quick search on Google and you can see the price medicinal willow bark brings... Weeping willows are a different genus and are not used for medicinal purposes. There is a variety of white willow whose branches turn bright red in the fall - very ornamental and very useful for baskets, crafts, charcoal, and pain relief... Willow is, as many others have mentioned, excellent for woodwork and furniture, paneling, and switches...
    Silvergirl
     
  18. toomb68

    toomb68 Well-Known Member

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    i don't care for willow....don't think it is worth much effort. not terribly attractive or stable for furniture. burns, but not well and little btu's. i have a large pile rotting away here right now...and i heat with wood.............
     
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  19. BlueFlames

    BlueFlames Looking to the skies

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    While I would never go to the effort of cutting one down for firewood, If one fell down and was easy to cut up with little effort I wouldn't waste it.

    I keep my junk wood separate from the high BTU wood, and burn it at the first of the season when I'm not too worried about coals making it thru the night etc.

    Also the kids and grand kids like to have bonfires sometimes and do the marshmallow on a stick thing. Junk wood is good for this.
     
  20. BlueFlames

    BlueFlames Looking to the skies

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