Cherry Firewood: Splitting, Seasoning, Burning And BTU

Cherry Firewood

Ever wonder if it’s alright to burn cherry in your fireplace or woodstove? You’ll find out everything you need to know in this article about cherry.

Cherry treesOpens in a new tab. around my area are plentiful, but sadly, most are dead. Because of that, I wondered if they safe to burn.

So instead of throwing a few pieces in the fireplace and hope my house doesn’t burn down, I did a lot of research on burning cherry and below I’ll share my findings.

Is Cherry Good Firewood?

Cherry Firewood

Yep! Cherry has a very nice smell to it when being burned. It’s a preferred wood to burn by a lot of people I read about online.

The one negative about burning in an open fireplace is that it “pops” or sparks a lot.

A fireplace screen would be a good idea when using cherry for heating your home.

You may wonder about the different kinds of cherry trees and how they’ll burn.

Best way to find out is to make sure its seasoned and go ahead and burn it and decide for yourself.

There no other safety issues other than the before mentioned popping.

One thing I have noticed about burning cherry is it doesn’t last as long in the fire as oak or ash. It’s not the best for burning overnight.

But during the time your awake, it’s great to have.

Splitting Cherry Firewood

Cherry is tougher than I ever gave it credit for. The number 1 reason I say that is that most of the rounds I split were stringy and a genuine pain in the a$$.

But I lived.

I believe it is cause they were green when I split them. If I had it to do over again I would have waited till they dried out more.

I don’t think all kinds of cherry are like that though. I had a wild cherry to split and as I said earlier,  it was a stringy mess to get through.

For the record, I was using a splitting axe. If you have a hydraulic wood splitter, you’ll have it made. Those things make life a lot easier!

Here is a video of someone splitting cherry. This will help give you an idea what its like.

Seasoning Cherry Firewood

Cherry Firewood

You got your tree cut and split and hopefully stacked off the ground (best practice for drying any firewood) and now you’re wondering how long it must sit till you can safely burn it and reap the rewards of your work.

If you’re in a hurry to burn it, then let it sit 6-8 months and you should be fine.

If you want to get the maximum amount of heat from it, let it sit a year and you’ll be glad you did, trust me.

Some quick tips about stacking firewood of all kinds.

  1. Keep it off the ground. That way moisture can’t soak up into the wood and rot it.
  2. Keep it in the sun. The extra heat from the sun will speed up the seasoning process.
  3. Make sure the wind can hit the stack
  4. Only tarp the top of the pile, not the sides.

Having a moisture tester allows you to accurately measure the moisture content of your firewood before burning it.

This is critical because wood needs to be seasoned properly with a moisture content around 20% or less to burn efficiently and safely.

If wood has too much moisture, it will smolder and smoke instead of burning cleanly.

Testing moisture prevents dangerous creosote buildup in your chimney, maximizes heat output, and reduces air pollution.

A quality moisture meter is an inexpensive investment that helps you burn wood responsibly and get the most value from your firewood supply.

Taking the guesswork out of moisture content makes a tester an essential tool for any wood burner.

You can get one here,  Moisture MeterOpens in a new tab. (Link To Amazon).


Cherry firewood is worth the time an effort in my opinion. They are very plentiful around my part of the world (Eastern PA).

Not to mention the cherry aroma that comes off the wood after you split it and while your burning it in your fireplace makes it super worthwhile.

Great smell to firewood is always a nice bonus to have. Hope this was helpful!

Brian Koller

Growing up on a farm in eastern PA, I’ve grown fond of wildlife and the woods and learning about the critters and firewood and everything else in-between. I made this site to share my experiences and knowledge.

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