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Author Topic: Which Fuel Crops are best?  (Read 15946 times)
renewablejohn
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« Reply #30 on: February 11, 2008, 04:08:12 PM »

You can dry the tree before you cut it if you ring bark it 6 months prior to felling
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Bob
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« Reply #31 on: February 11, 2008, 05:51:53 PM »

Quote
miscanthus is good

I think we have to be very careful with non-native species.  Would anybody seriously consider using Rhododendron or Japanese Knot Weed as biofuel crops.  Both grow well in poor conditions and can be clearcut on a regular basis.
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SteveH
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« Reply #32 on: February 11, 2008, 06:53:50 PM »

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miscanthus is good

I think we have to be very careful with non-native species.  Would anybody seriously consider using Rhododendron or Japanese Knot Weed as biofuel crops.  Both grow well in poor conditions and can be clearcut on a regular basis.

 Apreciate the sentiment Bob, but if you look back to the last ice age, most of the trees we have came from europe... the argument is that Beech came here with the romans as did sweet chestnut... If japanese Knot weed & Rhododendrons were good bio fuel crops we wouldn't have too much trouble from them in a few years, as they would be of benefit & get consumed.... got to be carful with the none native idea, bit like plant racisum... what next no potatoes or tomatoes... Miscanthus is OK... rarely seeds in the UK & from 10+ years personal experiance it is easy to control... Smiley
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billi
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« Reply #33 on: February 11, 2008, 07:37:14 PM »


steve your comment was

what next no potatoes or tomatoes


that can be a bid of a war now (even me not irish)   

one cause for the great famine in ireland was the reduction of varyeities of potatoes  that could  stand the fungus  problem....

some sort of new ones were introduced and others banned  , the new ones couldnot  deal with the climate and the others were gone.....

I was driving through the kerry and westcoast ireland mountains today( bob i nearly spotted you  Wink )  and there are ongoing programs how to get rid of the rhododendrons underneath the last existing old forrests in ireland (stange were are they all ?) , its still a pest even to most people a nice feature but they donot allow any other vegetation thats normaly there in an ancient forrest....




So it  is an important point what plants to bring to where  and i donot blame miscanthus (good energyplant)  but great care needs to be provided    what is planted on energyfields

regards billi
« Last Edit: February 11, 2008, 07:43:32 PM by billi » Logged

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SteveH
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« Reply #34 on: February 11, 2008, 09:11:58 PM »

 Maybe I didn't explain myself very well... I was just saying the idea of "Native & Non Native" plants is not a clean cut decision billi... if we can grow potatoes that originated from Peru in our field why can't we grow a fuel crop from another continent also...

 I think the Rhodedendron problem (Also here in Wales) may have been down to the wealthy upper class English... The use of high production, none Blight resistant potatoes might have been forced on to the people for the over population problem... I'm not makeing light of the Potatoe famine, I just think there might be more than a few contributing factors... We now have a similar situation in the EU were only specific cultivars are allowed to be sold... maybe we will never learn... There are Heratage seed banks like the "Henry Doubleday" institue at the moment fortunatly.

 The important thing is to take personal responsibility for what you plant & where... & if it causes a problem take responsibility for that too...

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billi
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« Reply #35 on: February 11, 2008, 09:56:05 PM »

peace my welsh friend  angel  good rugby  by the way....


highly agrar countries like ireland  ( even they look like never touched for tourists) have to deal with enegy crops    the sugar  industry could have been used for biofuel now its import....



i agree  that changes are needed and as time runs out ....fast changes arent good either

so thats all



regards billi


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Bob
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« Reply #36 on: February 12, 2008, 06:59:44 AM »

Steve, Billi

I agree with a lot of what you say Steve.  If I was writing this 12,000 years ago then the ice would have stopped about a mile away.  No an oak tree in sight!

I was driving along the very same road as Billi (do drop in if you are passing) and looking at the piles of cut rhododendron.  Yes it did start as an escapee from a big garden.  And I'm sure that the estate that planted the newly imported specimen had hundreds of gardeners who could keep on top of the plants.  Times change.  Maybe it's a bit like nuclear fuel waste, we won't be around to deal with the consequences of our actions and have to take that into account.

Steve I could not agree more with your comments on famine, potatoes and the EU forcing farmers to use a small number of cultivars.  We learn nothing from history except that we learn nothing from history!

I don't have a personal thing against miscanthus.  I would just prefer to see plants used (and we have plenty available) that can exist as a non-monoculture, fauna integrated system (ugh, what a mouthful - but I've only had one cup of tea and it's not yet 7am)  My personal favorite has to be chestnut because of the vast number of other plants and animals that can exist in a properly managed rotational coppice.  Nice oaks for the draw trees as well.
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Gary T
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« Reply #37 on: February 12, 2008, 08:24:13 PM »

Willow, Poplar, and reeds are all if I remember rightly excellent for decontamination and remaining effluent exiting sewage works, or pumped out of landfill. i.e. adds an extra highly effective stage to treatment. As such, combined with their role in the ecosystem, you would get many functions from one planting
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billi
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« Reply #38 on: February 12, 2008, 09:14:06 PM »

hello again

i always wounder  if we talk about co2   what is with the artefficial  fertelicer (Burry me for the bad english)


so since about 30 years nutrition not being produced by rotation of crops as additional is pumped into nature  ...... were is it now?

were is all that produced fertilizer going ? air ,soil ,water ,breast ,baby ?


i like to plant native , but i like the gorse and similar plants  they live in symbioses with rootanimals(organism) to collect the nuitrition out of the air  (like arcacia ,Lupine




its worth a study if we havent overfertiliced allready


just a thought

regards billi
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« Reply #39 on: February 13, 2008, 06:40:02 AM »

Gorse has the advantage that it is nitrogen fixing and usually grows as a precursor to the main canopy forming.  It does have the disadvantage that not much wants to eat it, it wont not form big boughs easily and it's covered in spikes!

Something I was playing with last year was the dead lower branches from Sitka spruce trees.  I wanted something quick and hot burning that I could use as a fuel in a bread oven.  It went something like this.  Take a dead branch, fold it up into a piece about 18" long, get somebody to tie a bit of twine around the middle and cut it off the tree.  You get a bundle that contains the branch, the twigs and a lot of the needles.  It's quick and leaves the tree intact.
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Ivan
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« Reply #40 on: February 14, 2008, 01:08:30 AM »

pine needles are fantastic - occasionally I collect a load from under my tree and burn them - they really frizzle! They're not too good for forest floors - make them too acidic, so you're not destroying any ecosystem by removing them
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byways
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« Reply #41 on: April 23, 2008, 09:42:46 AM »

This topic was suggested by Billi, but I thought it worthy of it's own category, as it's one of the potentially most important areas of sustainability and also potentially the area where we are likely to make the biggest mistakes.


The question is - which fuel crops are worth growing and which are not?



Depends where?   

A diesel tree would be nice, please.

http://www.treehugger.com/files/2008/04/the_diesel_tree_grow_your_own_oil.php

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