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Eucalyptus leaves in a paper bag, makes excellent fire starter.  RSS feed

 
Dale Hodgins
gardener
Posts: 6781
Location: Victoria British Columbia-Canada
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 My friend Felix, has the largest eucalyptus that I have seen in Victoria. It's constantly raining down leaves and little bits of bark. We have determined that this material presents a fire hazard, around his home.

Using my cordless blower, I regularly blow them into a long pile, along the side of his house. He puts them in paper bags, which are saved from his own groceries and gleaned from neighboring recycling bins. The material is stacked into his wood pile, so it's easy to get at, as the heating season progresses, and they can't blow away.

This can also be done with trimmings from evergreen hedges. Around here Cedar and Juniper, produce excellent fire starter. It's best to dry them only for a few days, before bagging them up. If left out all summer, much of the volatile oils will evaporate leaving material that is far less flammable.

One little bag of this stuff, is more than adequate to get a fire started in the morning. No pissing around with multiple matches or worrying about how to stack things. Just put in some small wood, set a bag on top, and light it. It takes off like it's dipped in gasoline.

Pine cones, eucalyptus bark, and cedar bark are amongst other items that make for a very quick fire.

We cut a lot of wood at Felix's house, so there's always sawdust. This sawdust is also bagged. It doesn't make the best fire starter, but it burns just fine, once a fire is established. On days when he needs only a little bit of heat, a bag of fire starter with kindling, is followed by a bag of sawdust mixed with other small cut off material. It's a great way to contain the mess and avoid having to haul anything off property. Sawdust from skill saw and a miter saw, are mixed with stuff from the chainsaw. All of this tends to be mixed with a certain amount of eucalyptus waste, that covers the area.
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