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Safe Wood As Homemade Air Fresheners?

Discussion in 'Home and Environmental Hazards' started by A.A.A., Jul 23, 2019.

  1. A.A.A.

    A.A.A. Regular Member Registered

    Random question here (with a bit of background).
    I've bought some stuff to have a go at learning to carve wood with the end goal of being able to make my own parrot toys (when I get my bird) from safe materials I know are 100% safe & natural - would nick space in the garage to do it, mum wouldn't be impressed with wood chips all over the house. Recently at work I was cutting blocks of wood (to glue on the back of mirrors to make them stand up for experiments on reflecting light beams) and one of the other technicians said she loved the smell of cut wood. I don't know what type of was at work (soft wood so probably pine) but it did temporarily cover the smell of the bin behind me.
    My wandering mind put these together as;
    "Would sawdust of safe woods (apple, pine, willow, etc) be a safe air freshener?"
    If you gathered up the dust & chips (otherwise waste products) & put them in a ventilated container (like a jar with holes in the lid) so the smell could come out, but the bird couldn't eat / inhale / choke on the little bits, would it be safe as an option to replace air fresheners?

    Could add vanilla pods after use in baking (I buy the real thing for special occasions and they keep smelling great for ages). Also at school there's a little used experiment where they used to make their own pure lavender oil from the flowers, if I made my own essential oil (with no chemical fillers) would that be safe? (Could add a couple of drops to the wood dust jar of they were both safe.)
  2. dianaT

    dianaT Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Good idea and worth investigating perhaps @DizzyBlue would know more about this.
  3. DizzyBlue

    DizzyBlue Administrator Staff Member Admin

    Lovely idea just need to ensure that the fumes are not too strong as bird breathing system is totally different to ours.
    Would suggest star anise as a good air freshener as too is fresh lilac flowers (and they are safe if ingested by birdies)
    another good one is cinnamon sticks as they have anti inflammatory and anti oxidant levels in them and I have used them to make toys before.
    Lemon and orange peel also rather nice and aromatic as long as not left too long don't want anything going musty or getting fungus on it.
    If you have a look at the food and diet folder there is a list of herbs etc that can be used that are safe so am sure that you could make some variation smells.
    I also pop f10sc in a bowl of water and that aroma in front of a fan not only humidifies the air but also makes it smell nice.

    How about you come up with some combination ideas and we can tweak them if there is anything that is scary obvious needing altering :)
  4. DizzyBlue

    DizzyBlue Administrator Staff Member Admin

  5. A.A.A.

    A.A.A. Regular Member Registered

    Have read the threads thanks, was just thinking if I do end up making toys with pleasant smelling by-products (already enjoy baking so those smells are no problem) then could I use some to replace the chemical sprays rather than throwing it all away (don't like excessive waste). Otherwise save it up for tinder for when we light the outdoor braizier / "fire box" mum has (minimum of bonfire night, often more often).

    I was already looking up safe colours for the toys too.
    Ideas include red cabbage indicator (another school experiment, boil & crush the cabbage & the 'juice' changes colour with pH - red with acid like vinegar, purple with alkali like sodium bicarbonate), chlorophyll 'waste' from testing starch in leaves for green (it's boiled out in ethanol but we distill off the ethanol to reuse so it's left in water), just don't know if these would cause tastes that would put off chewing or encourage eating.
    First gonna learn to shape, then I'll look at colours.
  6. Michael Reynolds

    Michael Reynolds Regular Member

    food colouring is very popular used in bird toys, it sounds interesting and I will love to see how the toys look when you have done them
  7. A.A.A.

    A.A.A. Regular Member Registered

    Been "playing" with the whittling knife & chisels (Wednesday, mum was fishing, I went with her as company & to get out of the house - we saw the {real} kingfisher - and outside the wood chips weren't making a mess). Just used the wood blocks I bought to make a fish, kingfisher & heron (painted in nail varnish as ornaments instead of toys), when my saw comes (ordered a few tools) then I might have a go at a chunk of apple wood.
    Got some cutproof gloves (should have worn them first time, grazed my thumb with the edge of the blade & took off a clump of skin) & a vice to help protect & steady while cutting.
    Wendy Cooper-Wolfe and dianaT like this.