Forest have been making high quality timber garden products for over half a century. David Coton has had the chance to see their brand new storage range that has recently been launched.
Log burners and open fires have enjoyed a resurgence in popularity over the past few years. Andy Taylor explains how you can have a continuous supply of dry, well seasoned, wood by investing in a log store.
There's no doubt that burners and fireplaces are an attractive, and for many people essential, feature of their home but they do need a constant supply of well seasoned logs.
You can buy logs from a garden centre or you may be lucky and live where a supply of wood is plentiful, especially if this is Ash, Hawthorn or Yew which burn slowly and produce lots of heat.
Although some wood can be used when 'green', unseasoned timber produces a lot of smoke rather than heat and can clog a flue with soot. This causes a log burner to become inefficient and, in similar circumstances, your chimney will become a fire hazard.
Depending on what time of the year it is cut, timber can contain 50% - 60% moisture, and the purpose of seasoning is to reduce this to about 20%.
That figure is usually achieved by splitting the logs, cutting them into short lengths and storing them for six to nine months in a sheltered position with good air circulation.
Made from slatted wood with a sloping roof, easy to assemble wood stores are ideal to keep logs well aired and dry. They are excellent value for money and will be sufficient for your household requirements.
Although the Pinnacle Log Store is a stylish exception, manufacturers such as Forest, Rowlinson and Zest4Leisure offer stores that tend to be quite utilitarian, while the Melbury and Okeford models characterize Dorset Log Stores' more decorative products.
The Emerald Woodstore from the Store More range is a good example of a metal fabricated version, made from hot dipped galvanized steel. Another is the Biohort Woodstock, there is a choice between 230cm and 150cm wide versions and both have a 20 year guarantee.
Other designs have integrated storage areas. This can be a simple shelf for kindling as in the Rowlinson Large Log Store or larger secure storage space featured in their Log and Tool Store. If you are regularly splitting and sawing timber, the secure space will be very worthwhile, a place to keep chainsaws, fuel and other tools and equipment, locked away.
The Forest Overlap 6 x 4 Apex Shed has a log store attached that can also be used to shelter BBQs and garden furniture. Rustically styled the shed's overhanging roof creates 50% more space that is covered to keep the rain off.
Whatever the amount of logs you have, they'll be a wood store to suit your needs. You'll certainly appreciate their sturdiness and, if you buy one in the spring, you'll have seasoned wood to heat your home next winter.
Although the days are short and the view from our Garden Centre is frosty and overcast, Andy Taylor suggests various jobs that can be done in the garden during the month of January.
Showcasing young musical talent, this year's Winter Concert at Arthur Terry School was an outstanding success and took place against the stunning backdrop of a Christmas Tree donated by GardenSite.
It was quite an honour for GardenSite to be asked to supply the Christmas Tree to Birmingham New Street Station this year, and to celebrate we're offering a Champagne High Tea to the winners of a seasonal selfie competition.
With Storm Caroline reeking havoc many people are likely to be contacting their insurance companies at some time regarding damage caused to sheds, greenhouses, fences and other garden property. Robert Hall explains how GardenSite.co.uk can help with an independent insurance quote and claim.