'...as I was weaving, the warp began to hang in places looser than the woven part. I thought to myself, it won't be any good. Then I thought, But I don't have to show it to anybody; it's just for myself. And I felt free! I did as I wanted. And then when I took it off the loom and threw it on the floor I felt that tiny click near the heart that meant: it was not bad. So I learned in that piece that I had freedom to do what I wanted. I didn't have to please anybody but myself' Lenore Tawney, 1971
We found this great list of things to do with wood ash. We have tested some ourselves like cleaning the glass of a woodstove and fertlizing tomatoes but we have NEVER dusted pets that have been skunked!
Making soap from wood ash lye
1 - Dust Baths - place cold ashes where your birds can get to them, the dust baths will control bugs
2 - Ring Around the Rosie - spread a low ring around individual plants are gardens to deter slugs/snails
3 - Mix into your Compost - in the north, this is the perfect thing!
5 - Cleaning Agent - mix with water to form a paste and use on the glass in your wood stove or fireplace. Ditto for rings left on wood furniture from glasses. It's abrasive, so use with care. Ditto for polishing silver
6 - Great Fertlizer for Tomatoes and other nightshade veggies
7 - Sprinkle on Slippery Walks - it takes very little!
8 - GREAT Ice Melt! It's alkaline nature makes ice melt, and then if the sun is out, the darkness of the ash creates heat, melting ice more and faster than regular ice melt - I tested it in my driveway in 2011.
9 - Algae Deterrent. VERY little needed. 1 Tbs per 1000 gallons of water as needed.
10 - Odor Control - Put in t-shirt material to insert in stored shoes. Also dust on pets that have been skunked - after having shampooed them with Nature's Miracle
11 - Make Lye - takes some work and old timers only use hickory ash, but it can be done.