Reply by Uncle_Salty

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Posted on Osage Orange

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183 posts in 3096 days

#1 posted 11-09-2010 02:09 PM

Yep: “Osage Orange.” “Hedgewood.”

Widespread planting by the CCC in the aftermath of the dustbowl in the form of tree rows in an east-west line on section lines throughout the midwest for erosion control caused by wind. Average life of the Osasge Orange tree: 50-70 years.

Very hard, with a yellow green tint. Very rot and insect resistant. It’s “fruit,” the “Osage Orange,” is toxic, and these “hedgeballs” are commonly used in my part of the country to keep crickets from entering/staying in a home. You simply place these balls around your foundation, and it keeps the crickets at bay.

Not sure I would introduce this wood to my kitchen in the form of a cutting board, but sealed bowls would probably be okay.

Due to its hardness and density, Hedge is a SUPERIOR rot resistant hardwood, and is commonly used throughout the midwest for fencepost material. It also is one of the very best, if not, the best woods for wood heating. However, it is not recommended for use with fireplaces without a screen. Pockets inside the wood “pop,” sending sparks and embers flying on regular basis. It does burn very hot, and is an excellent choice for woodstoves. One must be very careful, so pay heed: It is strongly advised to mix this wood with other hardwoods when banking a stove. There are more than a few woodstoves that have been cracked open by the intense heat potential of hedge.

It is very hard on all cutting tools and bits, and chainsaw chains are not exception. It being a long grained wood, it does split very well!

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