sumac for smoker fuel
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2016
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    Baroda Michigan
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    234

    Wink sumac for smoker fuel

    sumac.jpg

    Some people near me say they use sumac flower for the fuel in their smoker. Is this common to do or unhealthy for the bees?

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    New Haven, CT
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    423

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    I use it. This is a different sumac than poison sumac.

    Poison sumac is Toxicodendron vernix. Staghorn sumac is Rhus typhina.

    I looked up the etymology of sumac (it sounded like a native American word to me), and it's from the Syrian word for 'red', and came into English from Arabic through French.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Somerset, NJ
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    346

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    You can make sumac "lemonade" from it too. Look up recipe on the web.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    Clinton, Michigan, USA
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    452

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    Quote Originally Posted by Michaeljp86 View Post
    sumac.jpg

    Some people near me say they use sumac flower for the fuel in their smoker. Is this common to do or unhealthy for the bees?
    Common old school fuel. It was liked because it holds smoldering fire. But ask some of those same people, they will probably know the story of the MI beekeeper coming back to find his beeyard turned to pile of ashes after having dumped his smoker of smoldering sumac out at the end of day. Not that you can't do that with any fuel but it happened to be smoldering sumac in that case

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    KC, MO, USA
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    4,646

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    Sumac smoke is too strong/harsh for me, it worked on the bees but so does everything else.

    I like punk wood it takes a little time to collect, but it stays lit. In a pinch I grab leaves from the ground, brown paper bag or cardboard.

    We have several types here, the bees really work this one hard, it blooms late summer often during the dearth;

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rhus_copallinum

  7. #6
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Knox, Pa. USA
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    5,400

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    Equine pine pellets work great for smokers if you want one to burn all day. For a quickie I like timothy hay. Twisted and folded into a ball. But I did use sumac for a long time. Now As flowerplanter stated I too find it too harsh, On me not the bees.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Campbell County, Va
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    507

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    I let the scrapings from under my mower decks dry out and throw some in with either pine needles, pine cones, burlap, or smoker pellets. The tighly packed dry grass chunks from the mower have a long slow natural burn to them.
    Last edited by appalachianoutdoors; 02-09-2017 at 09:27 PM.

  9. #8
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Grand Rapids MI USA
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    1,593

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    I've tried a lot of different fuel and always go back to sumac. It is the by far the cheapest and easiest in my area.

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hudson, WI USA
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    2,569

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    I have used it and like it. I don't like the amount of time it takes to collect it.

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    west central Arkansas
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    1,080

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    Quote Originally Posted by appalachianoutdoors View Post
    I let the scraping from under my mower decks dry out and throw some in with either pine needles, pine cones, burlap, or smoker pellets. The tighly packed dry grass chunks from the mower have a long slow natural slow burn to them.
    That's a great idea. Going to try this one out.
    Season 5. TF.

  12. #11
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Hartwell, GA
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    188

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    Does anyone add Ammonium Nitrate to their smoker fuel?

  13. #12
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    Aug 2011
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    KC, MO, USA
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    4,646

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    Quote Originally Posted by Scottsman View Post
    Does anyone add Ammonium Nitrate to their smoker fuel?
    For what purpose? Is it safe to breath?

  14. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Denver, Colorado, U.S.A.
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    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    Burlap from old coffee sacks, for me. But, I do like to throw in pine cones gathered from the yard so the smoke isn't quite as harsh on the beekeeper's lungs.
    --shinbone
    (1975-1980, and now since 2011; maintain about 10 hives; Zone 5b; 15" rain; 5500')

  15. #14
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Campbell County, Va
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    507

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    Quote Originally Posted by FlowerPlanter View Post
    For what purpose? Is it safe to breath?
    FlowerPlanter...its used as a agricultural grade fertilizer

  16. #15
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Rockford, MI
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    4,323

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    Old 100% cotton jeans. Clean burning, non sooting, no mess and smolders for hours.

  17. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Lee\'s Summit, MO
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    2,514

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Beeman View Post
    Old 100% cotton jeans. Clean burning, non sooting, no mess and smolders for hours.
    I too use those and past their prime 100% cotton T-shirts. I find the cotton smoke to be pleasant and slightly sweet, no flame, no embers, easy to relight, and you can carry a couple 8"x 8" patches (jeans) that'll last about 3-4 hours apiece. 1/2 a T-shirt stuffed in a lit smoker and you'll not need to refuel all day. Much less space consumed carrying that vs. pretty much everything else I've tried.
    Ninja, is not in the dictionary. Well played Ninja's, well played...

  18. #17
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
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    wnc
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    144

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    Quote Originally Posted by Scottsman View Post
    Does anyone add Ammonium Nitrate to their smoker fuel?
    Well mixing it with sugar makes good rocket fuel. Or mixing it with aluminum powder makes pretty good tannerite. Guess mixing it with the proper mix of smoker fuel might turn a smoker into a pretty good rocket stove??? Lol, someone ought to try this, video it for Youtube, and start it with "Hey y'all, watch this!"

  19. #18
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
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    Gagetown,Mi
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    61

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    I use sumac and a few pine cones.

  20. #19
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    Jul 2013
    Location
    Boulder, Colorado
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    129

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    I was told the sumac smoke increases mite drop. I've used sumac smoke but can't confirm any thing different than my standard pine tree debris. I've also tried old blue jeans mostly because I figured the would start easier ( and they were old/free) but they burn with a red flame. I stopped using them figuring there is a chemical in the dye? that I didn't want in my hive.
    Fabian

  21. #20
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    May 2012
    Location
    Rockford, MI
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    4,323

    Default Re: sumac for smoker fuel

    Quote Originally Posted by Greenride View Post
    I was told the sumac smoke increases mite drop. I've used sumac smoke but can't confirm any thing different than my standard pine tree debris. I've also tried old blue jeans mostly because I figured the would start easier ( and they were old/free) but they burn with a red flame. I stopped using them figuring there is a chemical in the dye? that I didn't want in my hive.
    Fabian
    Make sure they are 100% cotton. Some jean manufacturers will mix 1-2% spandex in the material.

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