AG Tree Services are always striving to add that personal touch to our services. This was a bench made out of the produce of tree surgery. It allows for trees to remain part of the garden landscape even after they have had to be cut down. This bench was made almost entirely with a chainsaw and then given a quick sanding and a coat of oil.
We get asked a lot about burning conifer and there is a great deal of confusion in the UK regarding which species of logs are best to burn and which should be avoided. All wood is good to burn in a stove as long as it is properly seasoned/dried.The scandanavians burn mostly conifer and they also supply many of the stoves we install in our homes so bear that in mind.
Although you get nearly the same amount of heat out of a kilo of hardwood as you do a kilo of softwood, hardwood is denser so would need less logs than softwood, hence softwood is usually cheaper to buy.
Lots of people believe that you should not burn conifer as these contain sap/resins which tar up the chimney or flue. This is largely untrue. The more likely cause of a chimney or flue blockage is by burning unseasoned wood as the high water content combines with other gases and particles and as the fire isn't burning hot because of the inefficiencies of burning wet logs, the condensation forms a creosote substance which hardens as it cools to form a tar lining. The other problem is that the condensation is acidic and will corode the inner liner of a flue. It is important for anyone burning logs to have their chimneys/flues swept regularly by a suitably qualified person to ensure it maintains safe and unrestricted.
So, the importance is not really the species - more the quality! Softwood is great for getting a fire going so it has its place when buring logs. The exception is for those people burning on an open fire, as that some species of wood tend to spit making species choice as important as the quality. This happens not just with conifer but also some hardwoods - notably horse chestnut, sweet chestnut and willow.
Other factors to carefully consider when purchasing your logs, is to clarify exactly what volume of logs you are buying. Our loads are always measured to ensure you get 1m3 of loose logs. I am amazed when new clients phone up and ask for a price for a 'load' - can you compare a shallow covering of logs in a large tipper van to a deep trailer load or a back of a pick up? We have experimented by putting the same amount of logs in different delivery vehicles/bags and you would be surprised how easy it is to give the impression that you are giving more logs, just by the type of vehicle or bag it is delivered in. Beware of buying logs in builders dumpy/1 ton bags as you appear to be getting a good amount but they only hold around 0.6-0.75 m3 and they do not allow moisture out so the logs can't dry out. Also remember that if you buy large logs (diameter more than length), you will get more air space in your load so maybe it might be worth buying smaller logs although you have to put more logs on the fire. It all depends on what is important to each client. At AG Tree Services we try to use as much of the tree as possible so you tend to get a good mixture of sizes from narrow branch wood to large split lots.
At AG Tree Services we strongly recommend you buy your logs well in advance of when they will be required (even the year before if possible) and store them in a log store or garage so that you can drive that moisture content right down giving you the most efficient burn and subsequently the best value for money.
Please feel free to call us on 01305 246573 or 07403 944331 if you would like to discuss any firewood or to place an order. All our logs are locally sourced from sustainable woodland work or tree surgery arisings, keeping the carbon footprint low and we tailer the size and species to the needs of each individual client.
As AG Tree Services Ltd are keen to involve schools with trees and woodland in any shape or form, they have kindly produced and donated these logs to Damers First School in Dorchester for use in their outdoor education area. There are 72 logs in total ranging from 30cm in length to 2m which were cut to specification of the school and sanded to remove the worst of any splinters. They will be used as building/stacking materials in 'risky play' which is designed to teach children the ability to make their own judgements regarding the level of risk they may be exposed to.
I have been working in a 24 hectare ancient semi-natural woodland on the outskirts of Dorchester moving some smaller logs into a stack ready for next winters firewood. I had a good look at the sweet chestnut that we felled in November/December 2013 and we will still not be able to get it out for a couple of months (maybe May?) as the soil is still too wet and if extraction is attempted too early, it would ruin the bluebells and other flora there.
AT AG Tree Services, we like to think outside the box when it comes to what can be done with tree surgery and forestry produce. Logs are not only good for firewood, an alternative is to make a 'stumpery.
The logs are infected with specific fungi mycellium (normally edible varieties or those used for medicinal purposes such as shiitake, oyster and reishi mushrooms) which are sealed into the logs using bees wax to ensure that no other fungi or wood boring insects get in. It is wise to also seal the log ends for the same reason.
If done right, a crop will be ready in 5-10 months time. (See our photo gallery entry for 'Stumpery' to see an example of one we carried out in birch logs).
A recent National Forest Inventory Survey was carried at Becky Falls on Dartmoor. This is a stunning site and AG Tree Services are fortunate to have the great outdoors as their 'office'.
Visit http://www.beckyfalls.com/ for more details of this famous Devon waterfall.
AG Tree Services spent last Friday in North Dorset splitting willow, lime, ash and yew log rings for a large property in Manston, North Dorset.
We had spent many days at this property over the last few months taking down heavily storm damaged trees and had left the wood in approximately 8 inch rings.
On the day of splitting the logs, we hired a tracked dumper to move the logs to the splitter and managed to fill 3 good sized storage shed full of split logs. If we were to have attempted to move the logs and split them by hand I think we would have been there most of the week so another satisfied customer.
Its not all swinging around trees and looking at trees or woodlands for AG Tree Services. Sometimes we have to roll up our sleves and get stuck with an splitting maul. Thats all about to change as we await delivery of a 10 ton petrol log splitter which can be transported from site to site. That should ease the back aches and increase the log output by a huge amount.