The sycamore tree is a large tree, often reaching 100 feet or more in height. It is indigenous to the southeastern United States and is found many places throughout the region. A single tree can provide a large amount of firewood, but it must be cured before being used, because it won’t provide an appreciable amount of heat when burned green. Once cut, split and dried, sycamore can be used in several ways as firewood.
Sycamore wood can be used to build a blazing campfire at a campground, RV park or in the back yard. Stack wood in a pyramid or a square, or pile it loosely in a heap. However the wood is placed, it must allow air into the center of the pile in order for the wood to burn. Campfires are used for heat, as a place to cook and as a social spot for people to gather when they are camping. A blazing campfire also helps to discourage such predators as bears and coyotes from coming into the camp site.
In many homes, a wood stove is used as the main or as a secondary source of heat. In areas where sycamore trees are abundant, they are commonly used as a source of fire wood. One of the problems with using wood from these trees is that sycamore does not produce a lot of heat when burned. The U.S. Forest Service Products Laboratory Firewood Ratings gives it only a fair rating when compared to other types of firewood.
Because of the manner in which it burns, it takes a lot of sycamore wood to keep a house warm. One solution to this problem is to mix sycamore with other types of wood that burn hotter, resulting in a fire that emits more heat for the amount of wood burned. Otherwise, be prepared to burn more wood in order to produce enough heat to warm a house.
Sycamore wood can readily be burned in a fireplace. Because of the low level of heat production from this type of wood, and because of the general inefficiency of using a fireplace for heating, it is not a good way to heat an entire house. Burning sycamore wood in a fireplace will provide some heat for a single room, but in very cold weather it will need to be supplemented. The main reason for burning sycamore in a fireplace is for the ambience it provides.