Homegrown Fence Posts

It's the 9th of September. I took advantage of the season's first cool temperatures and spent the morning cutting fence posts from several Osage orange (Maclura pomifera; hedge, hedge-apple, bow wood, etc.) trees for a pen-building project that has been on my mind all summer.
Oscar H. Will III
November/December 2007
Add to My MSN

Kate Will


Content Tools

Related Content

The DR TreeChopper Clears Land of Shrubs and Small Trees 25X Faster Than a Chainsaw!

The DR TreeChopper clears land of shrubs and small trees 25X FASTER than a Chainsaw!

Dealing with a disgusted dog

A dog that will not stay home is a problem for all. An invisible fence may be just the solution to k...

DR® Power Unveils the TreeChopper™

New DR TreeChopper is the latest tree removal tool for homeowners.

Building A Rustic Front Yard Gate

Hank shows us how to build a gate using material fresh from the woodlot.

It’s the 9th of September. I took advantage of the season’s first cool temperatures and spent the morning cutting fence posts from several Osage orange (Maclura pomifera; hedge, hedge-apple, bow wood, etc.) trees for a pen-building project that has been on my mind all summer. We plan to bring cattle to the farm next spring, but I am not inclined to do it until decent receiving and working facilities are in place. My initial plan was to buy steel and treated wood posts for this project, but the farm has plenty of post-producing trees.

According to an Oregon State University report, untreated Osage orange posts have a service life of more than 60 years in the western part of that state. In moister environments, the same posts have a life expectancy of 25-30 years. In both instances, the hedge apple performed as well as or better than commonly available treated softwood, and in some cases even outlasted steel. That information was all the motivation I needed to quit searching on the Internet for the best deal on a load of creosote-soaked hard pine posts, upgrade my chain saw and head out to the hedgerow to have at it.

If you are like me, you only fire up the saw a few times a year, but even if you cut wood more frequently, you’ll want to take a look at Mike Lang’s piece on chain saw safety before next heading to the woods.

After the firewood is all cut and the fence posts are in place, there’s no greater reward than sitting down to a supper that includes some wonderfully warming fare– like macaroni and cheese. In case your vision of that cool-weather treat is bright orange and comes packaged in a cardboard box, we asked Susan Belsinger to create homemade variations that are easy to make and even easier to enjoy (Page 20). If you like cheese, minus the macaroni, Susie Schade-Brewer and Associate Editor Jenn Nemec tackle the topic in terms that will make you hungry and get you started with making your own.

I could draw your attention to the firewood features, humor and nostalgia pieces and even point out the best gift guide ever – all neatly tucked between the covers of this issue, but why not just turn the page and discover the November/December Grit first hand?

We’ve also been working on a couple of exciting new projects to keep Grit coming your way more than once every other month. The first is a free photo blog Web site ( cu.Grit.com ), where you can find photographs that didn’t make it into the magazine as well as the personal photo galleries of readers and friends like you. The Web site is also a place where you can participate in photo contests and win prizes for the effort. If you are an aspiring photographer or just want to share your rural lifestyle images with others, please sign up and start posting today.

If you find yourself hungry for even more Grit, then head on over to our Web site ( www.Grit.com ) and sign up to receive a free dose every other week with Grit eNews, our new electronic newsletter. And as always, please let me know how we are doing by emailing your comments and story ideas to Editor@Grit.com .

See you in January,
Hank


Hank Will raises hair sheep, heritage cattle and many varieties of open-pollinated corn with his wife, Karen, on their rural Osage County, Kansas farm. His home life is a perfect complement to his professional life as editor in chief at GRIT and Capper's Farmer magazines. Connect with him on .


Previous | 1 | 2 | Next






Post a comment below.

 








Pay Now & Save 50% Off the Cover Price

First Name: *
Last Name: *
Address: *
City: *
State/Province: *
Zip/Postal Code:*
Country:
Email:*
(* indicates a required item)
Canadian subs: 1 year, (includes postage & GST). Foreign subs: 1 year, . U.S. funds.
Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
Non US and Canadian Subscribers - Click Here

Live The Good Life with Grit!

For more than 125 years, Grit has helped its readers live more prosperously and happily while emphasizing the importance of community and a rural lifestyle tradition. In each bimonthly issue, Grit includes helpful articles, humorous and inspiring articles, captivating photos, gardening and cooking advice, do-it-yourself projects and the practical reader advice you would expect to find in America’s premier rural lifestyle magazine.

Get your guide to living outside the city limits delivered straight to your mailbox. Subscribe to Grit today!  Simply fill in your information below to receive 1 year (6 issues) of Grit for only $19.95!

SPECIAL BONUS OFFER!

At Grit, we have a tradition of respecting the land that sustains rural America. That’s why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing to Grit through our automatic renewal savings plan. By paying now with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of Grit for only $14.95 (USA only).

Or, Bill Me Later and send me one year of Grit for just $19.95!