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***Ashes To Ashes*** - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community

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***Ashes To Ashes***

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  • ***Ashes To Ashes***

    Out of curiousity, What do most of you do with your ashes from your ovens ??
    are they helpful to the garden ?? Any Other suggestions ??

    Cheers
    Mark

  • #2
    Re: ***Ashes To Ashes***

    hate to say it.....TRASH. I have a trash can lined with a trash bag in my outdoor kitchen are, I just dump my ash pail in it when full.

    RT

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    • #3
      Re: ***Ashes To Ashes***

      I have a big galvanized can I haven't dumped yet, but I was thinking about sifting it over another can thru some chicken wire to get the bigger chunks to use for charcoal and putting the rest in my compost heap.
      Elizabeth

      http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/e...html#post41545

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: ***Ashes To Ashes***

        1. Compost - don't over do it. A little goes a long way in the garden.
        2. Make soap. A lot of soap.
        3. Insulation. Yes, really, but don't let it get wet.
        4. Hearth cooking. Yes, really. See insulation.
        5. Special effects for disaster movies.
        6. Land fill - I hear fxpose is looking for some. Be nice and offer free shipping.
        7. Diamonds - assuming you have a strong enough compactor...


        Other ideas:

        10 Uses for Wood Ashes | Fireplace | This Old House - 1


        Serious but offbeat uses:
        1. Cat box odor control. A little mixed in sand or clay helps (never clumping - really icky things happen). Requires a lot of prep but can be used to line bottom of box (great with sand or paper) - not worth it for a cattery of less than 10 adult cats.

        2. Drawing - charcoals. Very messy but can be very impressive.

        3. Weed control in side walks. Fill in the cracks really well. The stuff makes lye - in high concentrations it does bad things to plants.
        Last edited by Archena; 10-09-2009, 06:47 PM.
        "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot

        "Success isn't permanent and failure isn't fatal." -Mike Ditka
        [/CENTER]

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        • #5
          Re: ***Ashes To Ashes***

          2. Make soap. A lot of soap.
          Arch,, are you serioous, can you really make soap out of ashes ??

          7. Pump up tomatoes. For the calcium-loving plants, McGrath places 1/4 cup right in the hole when planting
          I will certainly be doing this one next year, But that still leaves a lot of ashes,,, definitely the compost pile too..

          I just feel like its a shame to let all this by product go to the dumps where we aleady have too much stuff
          Cheers
          Mark

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: ***Ashes To Ashes***

            Originally posted by ThisOldGarageNJ View Post
            Arch,, are you serioous, can you really make soap out of ashes ??

            ...
            Yup. Wood ash supplies the lye. It's actually the original way to make soap.

            Originally posted by Mother Earth News
            To make lye in the kitchen, boil the ashes from a hardwood fire (soft woods are too resinous to mix with fat) in a little soft water (rain water is best) for about half an hour. Allow the ashes to settle to the bottom of the pan and then skim the liquid lye off the top. You can do this daily and when you've got enough of the weak solution start the soap making process by boiling the liquid down until it'll float an egg. (One word of caution: DON'T use aluminum dishes or pots. The lye will eat right through `em!)
            SOAP MAKING IN THE BUSH


            Originally posted by Soap Factory
            But by far the most common soap was made from potash and pearlash. Potash and pearlash are forms of the potassium based alkali present in plant and wood material. Potash and pearlash soaps were used by everyone from the reigning monarchs to the peasant or cottager, who made their own soap from the waste fats and ashes they saved.
            Colonial Soap Making. Its History and Techniques
            "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot

            "Success isn't permanent and failure isn't fatal." -Mike Ditka
            [/CENTER]

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            • #7
              Re: ***Ashes To Ashes***

              thats too cool, may have to give it a try,,, Isnt lye kinda caustic though ??

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: ***Ashes To Ashes***

                "Kinda" doesn't begin to cover it. Lye is very caustic so play carefully.
                "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot

                "Success isn't permanent and failure isn't fatal." -Mike Ditka
                [/CENTER]

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: ***Ashes To Ashes***

                  ok did a little research and came up with the following.
                  Fertilizer

                  Ash contains potash (potassium carbonate), phosphate, iron, manganese, boron, copper and zinc and can be quite beneficial as a natural fertilizer... sometimes. Wood ash increases the pH or alkalinity of soil, so use sparingly. I made the mistake of applying a stack of it in an area full of limestone - and guess what else is in ash - lime (calcium oxide). It wasn't the smartest move and I don't think anything will be growing there for a while. Black charcoal is a little different in that it has a much higher ratio of carbon - so this can be used more liberally.

                  Cleaning

                  Dip a damp rag into ash and use to clean silverware, brass and glass. Ash added to a scourer can also give your scouring a bit more oomph.

                  No great stuff,, they did also say it makes a great ice melter, I dont know that I would be wanting to track it thru the house though,,,,

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: ***Ashes To Ashes***

                    Out here in the West putting the ashes on the garden is a really bad idea. We have alkaline soil as it is. I just dump it in the trash (after making really sure its not still hot).
                    Joe

                    Member WFOAMBA Wood Fired Oven Amatueur Masons Builders America

                    My thread: http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/j...oven-8181.html

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: ***Ashes To Ashes***

                      Can't help you on the ice issue. In Alabama we have well behaved snow - only shows up once every few years and only stays for the day.

                      You might have a shot at some super pink hydrangeas... or is alkali for blue?
                      "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot

                      "Success isn't permanent and failure isn't fatal." -Mike Ditka
                      [/CENTER]

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: ***Ashes To Ashes***

                        Here in SWVA, the soil can't hold its lime for nothin'. This in spite of being smack on top of some large limestone deposits. Go figure. I think a judicious amount of ashes in the compost heap will be fine here, but that doesn't take care of next year's ashes... maybe we'll get a lot of snow and I can use some up on the ice. It does work pretty well and I'd rather use that than salt.
                        Elizabeth

                        http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/e...html#post41545

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: ***Ashes To Ashes***

                          Aren't pretzels boiled in a food-grade lye solution? Maybe the make-your-own-lye-from-wood-ash solution would complete the mystical oven cycle.
                          My geodesic oven project: part 1, part 2

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: ***Ashes To Ashes***

                            Bavarian pretzels are dipped in a soda/lye solution (had to look that one up). Most aren't. Egg washes and double bakes seem common.

                            But at least one source I found mentioned stone hearth baking. Create a new source of lye as you bake!
                            Last edited by Archena; 10-11-2009, 12:09 PM.
                            "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot

                            "Success isn't permanent and failure isn't fatal." -Mike Ditka
                            [/CENTER]

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: ***Ashes To Ashes***

                              Some potters use ash as an ingredient in their glazes. I believe it needs to be clean, sifted or just burned thoroughly. The color develops in part to the type of hardwood being burned.

                              Just joined FB and have only being using my WFO for two weeks now. Baked nine loaves of sourdough yesterday and then slow roasted some pork butt overnight to pull for sandwiches.

                              Can't get enough, already.

                              Adam

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