Hardwood Varieties: The Most Common
Hardwood Varieties: The Most Common
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Each variety of hardwood has its own specific characteristics. Each and every type is unique and creates a different effect.
Jatoba is an exotic variety that can come from Latin or South America. Its natural golden colour can have a reddish or brownish tint when freshly cut, and a more brownish-red colour once aged and dried. The Jatoba grain is very obvious and hides wear marks well and it is also a very hard, resistant wood.
Hickory is a variety that is generally found in America, more precisely from southern Ontario to northern Florida and in Kentucky. It is a very hard, resistant wood that offers a wide variety of natural colours, ranging from beige to quite dark brown. Hickory often contains very visible knots that accent its natural look.
Maple is a variety that is softer and more uniform both in colour and texture. The growth rings of maple are very fine which produces less contrast in the wood, making it paler. Due to the lighter colour of the wood, imperfections and marks are often visible. Its grain can look curly, striped or even spotted. Maple offers a wide choice of colours, ranging from beige to almost white or even rich brown.
Pine wood is similar to maple in its fine and relatively uniform texture. The whitish yellow colour of the wood when freshly cut changes very little when processed. White pine is the softest wood, therefore not very resistant to the demands of everyday life, but it is the easiest to work with. It is easily found in the maritime regions of Canada, in Quebec, Ontario as well as in the eastern United States.
White oak is characterized by visible growth rings and a colour ranging from creamy beige to brownish grey. It is naturally solid and resistant, more or less hiding scratches and marks. White oak generally originates from Canada (in southern Quebec) and the eastern United States.
Since red oak grows slowly, it is common to see boards with many visible growth rings. The colour of red oak can range from white to pale brown, whereas the heart of the wood may be reddish brown. It is quite a robust type of wood, so relatively resistant to accidents. Red oak is mostly found in southeastern Canada and the eastern United States.
Found in the eastern United States and southeastern Canada, walnut is quite hard, however scratches may be visible. It has a lot of contrasts due to the enormous difference between the sapwood (the layer just after the bark) and the heart (the centre of the tree). This characteristic results in a variety of shades and colours. Unlike other types of wood whose colour becomes richer over the years, walnut becomes paler.
Cherry birch, also known as yellow birch, is found mainly in Quebec, the northeastern United States and in the Great Lakes region. Cherry birch wood has shades of beige that can vary to brownish red. Its grain can sometimes look curly or wavy. It is a hard, strong wood, but cannot withstand humidity.
Cherry wood has good density. It is characterised by the contrasting colours of different planks. The typical colour of cherry is creamy white in which golden and red highlights can be seen. It comes mainly from the United States and Canada.
White ash comes from Canada and the United States. Its growth rings are very visible and even characterized by their colour which range from creamy white to dark brown. Over the years, white ash tends to take on amber tones. It is quite hard, resistant wood with a straight grain.
The main origin of Cabreuva is Brazil, and as any exotic wood, it is extremely tolerant to pressure, so doesn’t damage easily and it is very durable. What’s more, the wood’s colour is relatively uniform which helps hide imperfections. Its colour varies from orangey brown with a touch of yellow to dark brown with a touch of red.
From Brazil, Tigerwood is among the hardest. It is characterized by relatively dark streaks on a pale background, resulting in its name.
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