12 Clever Ways To Repurpose Leftover Firewood In Your Home And Garden

After winter's final frost, the chimney finally gets a vacation. At this time of year, you might find yourself with stacks of leftover firewood and nothing to do with them, but it would be a crime to let nature's resources go to waste. Instead of leaving the logs to rot or attract spiders and insects, there are several ways you can repurpose the pieces of cut wood around your home and yard. We have 12 different upcycling ideas that will turn the logs into decorations and furniture for inside your home or garden supplies and other useful items for your outdoor space.

Fortunately, all these hacks for repurposing leftover firewood are beginner-friendly and easy to complete. In fact, several of them can be done in just one evening and with only a few logs. You can treat the firewood like the planks you'd get from the hardware store and use it as the base for several designs. Repurposing these items is an excellent way to save money and minimize excess waste, so gather your logs and get started.

1. Give your garden a rustic border

You can leave the leftover firewood outside, but instead of in a pile, let it act as your garden border. The wood lining will give your yard a nice rustic touch. You can use the wood logs to border plant beds, hedges, shrubs, and other greenery. Not only will it look fabulous, but adding edging to your yard can help prevent soil erosion and can make a border that weeds won't be able to cross, thereby reducing the amount of weeds around your plants. The logs can either border your entire garden space or be used to separate plants from one another.

2. Build a birdhouse

All those leftover firewood logs are ideal planks to build a DIY birdhouse out of. This is a homey decoration for your outdoor space that will match perfectly with your garden's firewood edging. Plus, the birdhouse may attract local wildlife that can benefit your garden, too. You can make multiple homes for your feathered friends with just a couple of logs. Simply cut a log down to size, carve out the inside to make it hollow, drill a hole in the front, and attach a roof and small perch.

3. Craft raised garden beds

Another backyard creation you can repurpose the chopped wood into is a raised garden bed. Raised garden beds are great for maximizing yard space and improving water drainage. They also require less maintenance than in-ground beds since they are prone to fewer weeds. Best of all, making it yourself allows you to customize the size of the boxes to fit your space and gardening needs. To use logs for this purpose, simply lay them out in the shape and size of your choice, then fill the inside with soil.

4. Use big logs as rustic planters

Besides making raised garden beds, you can also use the wood logs to create individual planters. This project works best with larger logs that haven't been split yet. The porous wood allows for drainage, the natural look complements gardens, and over time, the wood will decompose to fertilize the soil. Hollowing out the log requires power tools, preferably a chainsaw or corded drill. Once you hollow out the log, fill it with your favorite potting mix and add your plant.

5. Save space in a large planter

Your leftover firewood can also help you save space and money when it comes to filling large planters. Instead of entirely packing the garden beds with soil, you can substitute some of the dirt near the bottom with wood logs. Just add your leftover firewood to the bottom of the planter and lay it down evenly before mixing it in the dirt and layering enough soil on top. Then, you can plant your seeds or seedlings as usual.

6. Make mulch for the soil

Did you know that you can create your own mulch from leftover firewood? All you need to do is chop these logs into small wood chips. Then, you can sprinkle them around your shrubs and hedges like you would store-bought mulch. Since the mulch pieces need to be really small, it is best to use a wood chipper or shredder to make the process go smoothly and take less time.

7. Add it to the compost pile

Your old firewood can bring new life to your garden through compost. Simply add it to your DIY compost pile and let the wood break down into nutrients for your plants and soil. You'll want to break down the logs into twig-sized pieces or smaller to help them decompose quicker and prevent them from interfering with the decomposition of your other green and brown organic matter. On the other hand, if you need to contain your compost pile in an area, you could place logs in a circle to act as a barrier and then throw all your compost materials inside.

8. Turn it into sawdust

The hearty firewood logs can become tiny specks of sawdust if sent through a wood shredder. There are many uses for sawdust, including cleaning up spills. The wood fibers are super absorbent and can make spilled oil or paint and other messes easier to clean. You can even wet the sawdust and use the moistened fibers to collect dust from cement floors. If taken from walnut wood, the powder can also work as a weed killer in the garden.

9. Create coasters

A simple DIY project that is both functional and stylish is creating wooden coasters. You can cut the firewood into whatever shape you'd like and coat it in a waterproof sealant to finish your design. These simple pieces can add a rustic flare to a table place setting while keeping the surface free of water rings. Plus, you can also use the coasters underneath flower vases or candle jars for added pizzazz.

10. DIY picture frames

Another project you can make with the wood logs is picture frames. Use as many strips of firewood as you please to create frames big and small, attaching them together with wood glue or another strong adhesive. Each piece will be a unique design that features different wood grain patterns and tones. Try painting, staining, or bedazzling the wood to further customize the photo accessory and tie it in with your existing decor.

11. Fashion stylish shelves

Need more storage space? Well, those leftover firewood logs are perfect for building a decorative shelf. After cutting them flat, sanding them smooth, and fastening them to the wall, you'll have a nice country-chic platform that can house anything from trinkets to tools. Install one for a floating shelf or multiple to mimic an open cabinet. Besides, they will flawlessly match your DIY picture frames and coasters.

12. Construct furniture pieces

There are several other furniture pieces you can create with your firewood, like these DIY projects made with 1x2 wood planks. From plant stands to chairs, with a little bit of creativity and elbow grease, the possibilities are endless. And if it doesn't turn out the way you thought it would, well, you can always chuck it in the fireplace and use it to heat your home.