Camping season is almost here. Unless of course, you are a hardcore camper, in which case, every season is camping season but before you pack up your firewood to take to an Indiana state park or campground, there are some things you need to know.
140 Icky Things
140. That is the number of icky things known to be transported within your firewood when you move it from home to a state park. Those "pests and pathogens" can cause a great deal of damage to the natural forestry across the state of Indiana. Some of those pests include:
- Asian Longhorned Beetle
- Thousand Cankers Disease
- Sirex Woodwasp
- Gypsy Moth
- As well as fungal infections transmitted via insects
It Is Best to Buy Your Firewood
The safest options for wood to build your campfire include:
- Buying bundled wood at the state park camp store
- Buying wood from a firewood vendor who has a compliance agreement with the state of Indiana.
- Purchasing wood that has either a USDA or State Compliance Sticker
Other firewood options include bark-free, kiln-dried scrap lumber or wood from other areas of Indiana, including your own home, if the bark has been removed.
More Information About Safe Firewood
If you need more information about firewood for camping in Indiana, there is a wonderful resource called DontMoveFirewood.org. They offer a number of helpful suggestions like,
- Buy firewood near where you will burn it- a good rule of thumb is only using wood that was cut within 50 miles of where you’ll have your fire.
- Wood that looks clean and healthy can still have tiny insect eggs, or microscopic fungi spores, that will start a new and deadly infestation.
- Aged or seasoned wood is still not safe. Just because it is dry doesn’t mean that bugs can’t crawl onto it- and some insects can take several years to mature inside the wood.
They also offer you a plethora of other really useful information including how to source your firewood from a reputable dealer. There is even a 'Firewood Finder' on the website to help you locate firewood near you for sale.
The Bottom Line
The bottom line is, you can help prevent the spread of pests that could damage our Indiana forestry and it is really very easy to do. So, before you build your next campfire in an Indiana state park, make sure you're using approved firewood.
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