Is Crepe Myrtle Wood Good For Anything? (7 Quick Facts)
Absolutely! Crepe Myrtle wood makes one of the wood options for firewood. However, we don’t recommend employing it as your first firewood choice.
In most cases, it’s used to start a fire. You can select from other top options if you’re looking for efficient firewood.
Even though Crepe Myrtle is a rare tree, especially in the United States, it’s still available abundantly in different parts of the country. Wood is mainly used for crafts and arts.
For this reason and others, people wonder whether it’s a great option for firewood. Let’s consider whether Crepe Myrtle wood is a good choice for firewood and crafts.
Describing Crepe Myrtle Wood
Even before we determine whether Crepe myrtle wood is perfect for anything, it would help to first understand what the wood is.
The wood comes from the crepe myrtle tree, which is popular for having beautiful colors, especially when they flower.
Therefore, the tree is common in farms of people who like incorporating brilliant colors in their gardens, especially during summer. We recommend them for use as ornamental trees.
However, it’s difficult to find this tree in the United States because it isn’t native. For your information, the tree was shipped from Australia and India by people who wanted decorative plants in their compounds.
Research has proven that the plant thrives well in warm climates. In the United States, you’re likely to find them in southern states.
One state is known for having a good population of the Crepe myrtle plant in Oregon.
It’s hard to come across a forest of crepe myrtle wood.
Common Uses of Crepe Myrtle Wood
Even though you can use crepe myrtle wood as firewood, it’s rarely employed for this purpose. However, this wood is commonly employed in arts and crafts.
If you find yourself in areas where the wood is abundant, you’ll notice several stores with items developed from crepe myrtle wood.
Many years ago, crepe myrtle wood was commonly applied as medicine. However, it isn’t used for that purpose anymore, and we wouldn’t recommend it for such.
You should be careful while using crepe myrtle since the leaves and wood of this tree are considered toxic and can lead to skin irritation.
Is Crepe Myrtle Toxic To Puppies?
If you own a puppy, then you understand that it’s an inquisitive animal that explores the environment through chewing, licking, digging, or even sniffing. Some plants have toxins that might be dangerous not only to your puppy but also to other animals.
Luckily, through research, the “American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals” found out that the plant isn’t harmful to either animals or humans.
Therefore, you can grow the plant within your compound without worries, even when you have puppies.
How Crepe Myrtle Burn?
Since crepe myrtle is hardwood, you would expect it to burn very slowly. However, this isn’t always the case.
Like other pieces of wood, you should season crepe myrtle before burning it. After seasoning it, it’s likely to become lighter.
Comparatively, crepe myrtle burns slower than pine. However, it isn’t far from it.
If you have never used crepe myrtle, expect something that is fast burning, quick to ignite, and burns hot and nice.
If you’re looking for wood that burns hot within a short period, we recommend crepe myrtle. Therefore, you’ll require a lot of wood to keep a campfire burning for longer.
How Does Myrtle Wood Smell While Burning?
As we have seen above, myrtle wood is rarely burned like wood. It’s therefore difficult to determine how it smells.
Some liken its smell to that of a strong spice. This can be attributed to sap in the myrtle wood that burns off faster.
The smell that myrtle wood produces before you burn is the smell you’ll get when it burns. However, the wood doesn’t smell good like other wood products.
For this reason, we don’t recommend using myrtle wood, especially for smoking food. It also emits a lot of smoke that will interfere with your food.
Is Myrtle Wood Perfect for Campfire?
If you restrict yourself to burning myrtle wood, you won’t get the best results as you would from other known firewood options.
Burning myrtle leaves causes them to emit toxic fumes. The fumes can cause nausea and headaches.
Some people prefer to cook over their campfires. If that is the case with you, don’t use myrtle wood on the campfire. Even though the woods might not present any danger, the leaves might emit toxic fumes into your food.
Since myrtle is a hardwood, you should avoid using it on your campfire. We all understand how hardwoods are difficult to split. Only employ them for your campfire if you don’t have other options.
However, before burning myrtle wood, ensure you dry and season them properly. Avoid burning any wood that hasn’t dried well.
Avoid using myrtle wood, especially if you’re allergic to smoke. The wood produces a lot of smoke while burning that might affect you.
Instead of burning myrtle wood for a campfire, you can use it to make valuables, including wood carving and woodturning applications. We also recommend using myrtle for outdoor use to improve the appearance of your compound.
Is Myrtle Poisonous To Humans?
We have seen that myrtle wood isn’t toxic to puppies. But is it poisonous to humans?
The smell of the myrtle wood, when burned, is pungent and can cause serious headaches and sneezing. This happens especially when you crush the leaves and sniff them.
We discourage you from any culinary application of the plant thanks to the presence of safrole.
The Final Verdict
As we have seen, crepe myrtle can be used as a firewood option. However, we don’t recommend it as your first firewood choice.
It has proven to be toxic and harmful to both puppies and humans, especially if you burn the leaves.
Even though the wood is rare, it presents additional uses than just lighting a campfire. For instance, some people employ it for making arts and crafts.
If you’re after the best firewood options, consider other wood types before resorting to crepe myrtle wood.
Crepe Myrtle: Essential Southern Plant