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One of my favorite aspects of our home is the fire pit in the back yard. I have noticed a fair amount of people do not actually use their fire pits like a few of other extras home owners install. I did not want to be this way and so set about making it easier for me to take advantage of what I already have when I get in the mood to do so. My thinking is that if I am going to have the work of mowing and weeding around it, I should get some benefit from the work.
With a lack of a wood source in our yard, this meant I would have to find wood elsewhere. Buying it bundle by bundle from the local gas station for $5+ each was out of the question. Thankfully, it was not difficult to find extra wood around town on trash pick up day. Over time my small pile became larger. It eventually was stacked in a orderly fashion…then the weeds began to grown under and through it. It was beginning to look less and less like a good thing to have in our yard. This needed to change. What to do? A firewood rack was needed. (The picture below was after I cleaned up most of it and realized I had not gotten a before picture.)
While a rack to store firewood is in reality still a stack of firewood, it provides a few benefits over having a pile of wood along your fence or off in a corner of your yard:
- It is easy to keep orderly. You can either place the rack on gravel in your driveway, on top of stepping stones, or over the grass in your yard. By having a clearly defined edge you are able to weed eat and mow around it with easy.
- If there is a roof it can help keep your wood dry. Dry wood burns easier and with less smoke. It also makes your wood last longer.
- Reduced amount of insects taking refuge in the wood. Without contact with the ground the amount of insects seeking refuge in your firewood will decrease. They will still be there, so watch out for spiders and such, but you will have fewer of them.
- You are encouraged to use what you have. It is easy to keep gathering wood once you start. Gathering wood for the sake of gathering wood is not the point though. The point is to use what you have – your fire pit – to enjoy the resources you own. Clutter is still clutter even if you call it firewood. Once your designated space is full you are forced to either stack it on the ground or stop. By giving yourself a predefined space you can now allow yourself to stop and move on to other things.
After transitioning from a weed filled pile of hidden wood to a designated space I felt less like our backyard was the eyesore of the surrounding neighbors. It may be a feeling that came solely from me and not a reality, though the one neighbors sparkling pool and the other neighbor’s well ordered garden did contribute to this feeling of mine, that still does not mean I should not put effort in to cleaning up after myself to keep things looking nice. This is especially true if it makes me feel better about myself and more likely to open my home and garden to entertaining friends and family.