With so many types of trees that you can get for your fireplace, it might be hard to sort out the wood from the trees, quite literally!
However, it will certainly help if you narrow down what kinds of wood there are out there and what exactly they do.
The first thing that you need to know is that not all woods are created equal. Some are more suitable than others for different purposes.
For example, some woods are better suited for making furniture while other woods are better suited for burning in a fireplace or stove.
Elm wood contains around 40 species, but most of them are not native to North America. The best known of these is the American Elm (Ulmus americana).
It’s also one of the few trees that has been used as an ornamental plant since ancient times. However, they can also be used to burn firewood. Keep reading to find out more about these amazing trees.
What Is Elm?
The American Elm is actually a deciduous tree with a long history.
It was once found throughout the eastern half of the United States, although today it only grows in a handful of states like New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin.
In fact, it’s the most common street tree in New York City.
It’s a very popular choice for landscaping because its leaves turn yellow during autumn and it produces beautiful flowers in spring.
Its bark is also smooth and easy to peel off.
It belongs to the same family as the European Elm (Ulmus procera) which is another type of tree that’s well-known for being able to withstand strong winds.
How Does Elm Burn?
As mentioned above, the American Elm is an okay option when it comes to firewood. They have a low moisture content which means that they won’t catch on fire easily.
Their density makes them ideal for use in stoves and fireplaces.
Certain species of elm produce different results.
If you like to make hot coals, then you can definitely look at American elm, which does have a low BTU.
However, something like red elm does have a much higher BTU and is much easier to split than the American and Siberian elm. We'll go into more detail about each elm type below.
However, you should note that this is not always the case. If you live somewhere like Florida, then you may want to consider using cedar instead.
Cedar burns hotter than any other kind of wood and it’s much easier to work with.
How Well Does American Elm Burn?
American elms are decent for burning in a fireplace. They’re dense enough to hold their shape and they don’t break apart too quickly.
However, they are very hard to chop up and you might find it difficult to get logs for your fireplace.
If you’re looking for a wood that burns really well, then you should probably stick to alder. Alder is a fast-burning wood that creates extremely high temperatures. You can even use it to start fires.
How Well Does Red Elm Burn?
Red elm is an excellent wood for burning. It’s incredibly durable and it doesn’t crack or splinter. This makes it perfect for fireplaces and stoves.
This type of elm has a much higher burning rate than some of the other elms that you have on this list.
However, if you’re going to use it as firewood, you’ll want to take care of it properly. Make sure that you dry it completely before storing it away. Otherwise, you risk having it rot.
How Well Does Siberian Elm Burn?
Siberian elm is one of the strongest woods that you can buy. It’s so strong that it can support itself without needing anything else to stand on.
This makes it great for building furniture and it’s often used to build fences. It’s also been known to be used for making boats.
You can burn this wood on a stove but it will need to be dried out first. Once it’s dried out, you can store it away safely.
This kind of elm is much easier to burn than American elm, it is also very dense, which might make it difficult if you are trying to fell your own firewood.
What Kind Of Firewood Do I Need To Buy?
You’ve got two options here: either you buy pre-cut firewood or you cut your own.
Buying Pre Cut Firewood
The best way to go about buying firewood is by purchasing pre-cut firewood from a local supplier. Buying firewood from a local source is usually cheaper than buying it online because there’s no shipping involved.
Pre-cut firewood is just what its name suggests – it’s already chopped up into pieces. The size of these pieces depends on the size of the log that was cut down.
It’s important to know how big the piece of wood is that you're getting. For example, if you’d like to purchase a 4x4 piece of firewood, then you’ll want a piece that’s approximately four feet long.
You can choose between buying whole logs or splitting them yourself. Wholesale firewood is usually split into three different sizes: small, medium and large.
These sizes are based on the amount of time that it takes to split the log.
Splitting Your Own Firewood
When you decide to split your own firewood, you’ll need to know how many people are going to be using it. If you only plan on using it yourself, then you won’t need to worry about splitting it.
Once you've decided how many pieces you need, you can begin cutting your own firewood. You can do this with a chainsaw or a manual saw.
Firewood can be a vital part of any home, especially if you have a fireplace that you actually want to use. However, you don't want to be continually using the wrong type of fuel.
Elm is a decent type of wood that you can use, however, it can be notoriously difficult to chop down, so you'll have to be sure you have the right equipment to get this wood.