Is Locust Good Firewood? Exploring the Qualities of Locust Firewood

Is Locust Good Firewood? Exploring the Qualities of Locust Firewood

When selecting firewood for your fireplace or wood-burning stove, you'll find various options, each with unique characteristics. One type of firewood that often piques the interest of seasoned firewood enthusiasts is locust firewood. In this article, we will delve into the standard features of locust firewood, the types of locust trees used, whether you can burn locust wood right away, and the burn quality and heat output. We'll also weigh the pros and cons of using black locust firewood.

Common Characteristics of Locust Firewood

Locust firewood is known for its distinct qualities, making it a popular choice among those who appreciate quality firewood. Here are some of its typical characteristics:

  1. Density: Locust wood is dense and heavy, which means it has a high energy content. This density makes it burn slowly and produce long-lasting heat.
  2. Hardness: Black locust, in particular, is renowned for its hardness. It is one of the hardest domestic woods available, which makes it exceptionally resistant to wear and decay.
  3. Low Moisture Content: Well-seasoned locust firewood typically has a low moisture content. This is crucial for efficient burning since wood with high moisture content can be challenging to ignite and will produce more smoke and creosote buildup.
  4. Minimal Smoke: When appropriately burned, locust firewood produces minimal smoke and creosote buildup in your chimney or stovepipe. This is a significant advantage for maintaining a clean and safe wood-burning system.

Types of Locust Trees Used as Firewood

When we refer to locust firewood, it's essential to specify the locust tree type. The two primary species used for firewood are the black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia) and honey locust (Gleditsia triacanthos).

  1. Black Locust: Black locust is widely regarded as excellent firewood. It's known for its high energy content, slow-burning properties, and exceptional hardness. It's an ideal choice for heating purposes.
  2. Honey Locust: While honey is also used as firewood, it's not as dense or thorny as black locust. It burns relatively well and produces decent heat, but it may not match the qualities of black locust.

Can You Burn Locust Wood Right Away?

Ensuring your firewood is correctly seasoned is key to efficient and safe wood burning. Seasoning involves allowing the wood to dry out to achieve the ideal moisture content for burning. Green or freshly cut wood contains a high amount of moisture, which makes it difficult to ignite and causes excessive smoke.

Locust wood, like any other firewood, should be seasoned before burning. Ideally, firewood should be split and stacked in a dry, well-ventilated area for at least six months to a year. This allows the moisture content to drop to around 20% or lower, making it suitable for efficient and clean burning. Using unseasoned locust wood can lead to poor combustion, increased creosote buildup, and potential safety hazards.

Burn Quality and Heat Output

When it comes to burn quality and heat output, black locust firewood shines. Due to its high density and low moisture content, black locust burns slowly and efficiently, producing a hot, long-lasting fire. It's an excellent choice for heating your home during the colder months, as it can keep your living space comfortably warm for extended periods.

The heat output of locust firewood is comparable to other premium hardwoods like oak and hickory. It provides a consistent and steady heat source, making it a preferred option for those who rely on wood-burning stoves or fireplaces for heating.

Pros and Cons of Black Locust Firewood

Before deciding whether locust firewood is suitable for your needs, let's summarize the pros and cons:


  1. High Density: Black locust is dense and heavy, providing long-lasting and efficient heat.
  2. Low Moisture Content: Properly seasoned locust wood burns cleanly with minimal smoke and creosote buildup.
  3. Hardness: It's exceptionally hard and durable, making it resistant to wear and decay.


  1. Seasoning Required: Like all firewood, locust wood must be properly seasoned before burning.
  2. Availability: Black locust trees are not as widespread as other firewood trees, so that availability may vary by region.


If you have access to well-seasoned black locust firewood, it can be an excellent choice for your wood-burning needs. Its high density, low moisture content, and slow-burning properties make it a reliable heat source. However, properly season your locust firewood to enjoy its full benefits and minimize potential drawbacks.

For the best firewood for burning and cooking, consider contacting Corrin Kiln Dried Firewood Co. You can order online or contact them at 302-656-6077 to elevate your wood-burning experience. They offer free delivery within 20 miles of 19801, with a reasonable fee for additional mileage. Enjoy the warmth and comfort of quality firewood from a trusted source.

Back to blog