TX heat and rain exposure deteriorates quality hardwood faster
North TX heat and rain exposure deteriorates quality hardwood faster IMO. I have 2 yr old large sticks of Live Oak (6-8"dia that burns almost like paper. I thought I had some time left toward it being quality burning but this last cool front might clean it out. By quality, I feel a good 8" + logs should last over-night (6-8 hrs) vs no coals. Now I feel I know why people with plentiful standing wood, cut it joust in time (six months to one season at the most vs shoveling wood. A good stove I'm sure is more efficient than my open Fireplace that I keep the damper 3/4 + closed on and the front glass doors closed to slow the burning. I get my heat from 7 overhead 1.5" stainless tubes, a steel back and 3 larger tubes on the floor open to the opposite side mainly.
How long do you expect a quality log of what size to burn? I have basically considered two cords of quality wood to provide moderate heat late evening to mid mornings during the mild winter weather (about 8 hrs of low coals vs a fire per day). Mild means you might go a week w/o a fire but when you are shoveling, it's like the wood has lost its value due to age. There is no end to learning and I "need" the exercise,BUT! Loger