Posts Tagged ‘milkweed fluff tinder’
During the recent Do It Yourself World survival weekend we experimented with various fire starting methods and tinder materials. Milkweed fluff was one of the materials we learned to use during the weekend. In a survival situation you will need fire starting skills and the knowledge of materials in your area that can be used to start a fire.
The fluffy silky fibers from a milkweed seed pod make awesome fire starting tinder. The milkweed seed pod forms in late summer and is often found deep into winter. The seed pod contains silky strands attached to a seed. Each seed has a bunch of strands, which catch the wind and act like an umbrella, floating it across the country to find a new resting place for the seed. The fluff from milkweed seed pods catches fire fast and easy, making it one of the best natural fire starting tinder materials you can find.
Milkweed seed pods form on the top of the milkweed plant in fall. These later burst open to reveal the seeds and fluff inside. When the seed pods open and the wind blows, the seeds float on the air. Often, in protected areas, where the wind does not hit the seed pods as strong, the fluff can still be found in large quantities.
As you are walking along through the forest and find a milkweed seed head, simply pull out the fluff from the seed head and add it to your tinder box for later. Milkweed fluff also makes good insulation for winter bedding or clothing in a survival situation.
To start a fire using milkweed fluff, build it as you normally would using milkweed fluff tinder at the bottom. The milkweed fluff catches fire very fast and easy, so the fire should ignite right away. Using good, dry leaves or grass on top of the milkweed fluff ensures that the fire will start right up.
In the photo below you can see the milkweed fluff has caught fire very well. This is less than a second after ignition.
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