It is against state law to bring firewood into Florida from out-of-state (with a limited exception for 50 miles from the FL border) unless the firewood has a master permit, certification of treatment, or other form of exemption. This is to protect Florida from invasive species that are known to spread on firewood and pose a great risk to the state; these include forest pests like emerald ash borer, sudden oak death, sirex woodwasp, spongey moth, and more.
The Florida Department of Agriculture asks that campers take the following steps to protect Florida’s parks and forests:
- Leave firewood at home and purchase aged firewood near your campsite location. Many parks offer firewood for sale at a reasonable price, or private sellers will have it available just outside the park.
- Firewood purchased at or near your destination should be used during your camping vacation. Don’t leave any unused wood behind and don’t take it with you to another destination.
- If you can’t burn your wood, donate it to a fellow camper.
- When buying firewood, make sure you receive pieces that are dry and have either little bark or bark that is loose (a sign that the wood is very dry). Not only will this reduce the threat of spreading diseases, but your fire will be easier to start.
- Reduce your need for an open fire by cooking over gas or charcoal when possible.
It is against the law to transport firewood from Florida into many neighboring states due to the infestations of both the giant African land snail and red imported fire ant. Florida has a suitable habitat for many harmful pests like the spotted lanternfly, Asian longhorned beetle, emerald ash borer, and spongy moth, all of which kill thousands of trees nationwide each year. Buying and burning local firewood will help prevent the spread of these destructive pests and reduce their negative impact on the forest health. This summary is accurate to the best of DMF staff abilities as of 23 June 2021.
Florida Web Resources:
- Firewood Regulations, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services
- Gardening Solutions: Firewood IFAS page, University of Florida
- US Forest Service Southern Region Firewood Information
- “Protect the Trees You Love” Florida Cooperative Agricultural Pest Survey Program Brochure
- State of Florida Rule on Firewood and Unprocessed Wood Products
- Hungry Pests, Florida Page
Pest Specific Information
- Laurel Wilt Disease Information
- Giant African Snail information
- Imported Fire Ant information and map archives
Firewood Business Related Information
- Florida’s Plant Protection Regulation Summary
- Florida Forest Action Plan 2020
- Firewood and Unprocessed Wood Products-Florida Rules
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