When burning a proper fire, the types of woods you use matter a great deal. Which firewoods burn best? The Firewood Poem by Lady Celia Congreve gives helpful advice on this topic. This poem was believed to be first published in the Times on March 2, 1930, but it mentions old folklore and shares knowledge that dates back further than that.
See for yourself which firewood is “fit for a queen” and which one has “a bitter smoke, fills your eyes and makes you choke.”
The Firewood Poem
by Lady Celia Congreve
Beechwood fires are bright and clear
If the logs are kept a year,
Chestnut’s only good they say,
If for logs ‘tis laid away
Make a fire of Elder tree,
Death within your house will be,
But ash new or ash old,
Is fit for a queen with crown of gold
Birch and fig logs burn too fast
Blaze up bright and do not last,
It is by the Irish said
Hawthorn bakes the sweetest bread.
Elm wood burns like churchyard mould,
E’en the very flames are cold
But ash green or ash brown
Is fit for a queen with golden crown
Poplar gives a bitter smoke,
Fills your eyes and makes you choke.
Apple wood will scent your room
Pear wood smells like flowers in bloom
Oaken logs, if dry and old
Keep away the winter’s cold
But ash wet or ash dry
A king shall warm his slippers by.
The Firewood Poem is © Celia Congreve.
Photo courtesy Andi.bxg/Flickr
Learn more about the best types of firewoods in this HGTVGardens.com article that features tips from me!
Be Respectful: Always maintain your fireplace properly, and respect your area’s “no-burn” days to ensure your fires are not disturbing your neighbors’ air quality.
Enjoy! “Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home.” Edith Sitwell