Trees can range from 80-120 feet in height and 2-5 feet in diameter. These trees adapt quite well to their surroundings. If in a crowed area they will grow tall and lean but given room the will spread their boughs creating massive branches. Ash is used in all kinds of applications from baseball bats to furniture and flooring. This light coloured wood has a straight grain and uniform texture.
Aspen, commonly known as poplar is a rapidly growing species that can reach the height of 60 feet. However, these trees have a short life span. The beauty of the grey bark and its rustling leaves are a value to our marsh areas. Aspen is a soft white to pale yellow colour and remarkable resilient. Since Aspen has a low conductivity to heat it can be used in the making of kitchen utensils, match sticks and sauna benches.
Basswood is soft and light but is quite tough and possesses a fine and even texture. Native Americans used the inner bark to make rope, thread and fabric. Basswood working properties are excellent and is a premium carving wood. Generally, basswood is used in the production of blinds, shutters and musical instruments.
Beech trees are part of the Oak family with smooth silver-gray bark and deep spreading roots which can grow up to 120 feet. In Keltic times beech ashes were mixed with goats fat to produce a red hair dye. The wood is a whitish red to dark reddish brown colour with a uniform texture. Some of the uses for beech are flooring, paneling and brush handles.
If the Oak and Beech contend for the rank of king, there is no doubt that the Birch clad in silver cloth and adorned with emeralds hold the title of queen. In early times Birch trees were used to make canoes, roof shanty's as well as using the sap to make wine and spirits. Birch is a hard and strong wood that is easy to work with. The colour varies from white to a reddish brown. Today we mainly use the birch tree for furniture, doors and flooring.
The Cherry tree can grow up to 80 feet, live over 150 years and belong to the rose family. Besides eating the fruit the bark has been used for medicinal purposes. As cherry wood is exposed to light the colour darkens from a white or pale red to a dark red. Cherry is used in a variety of applications the most popular being flooring, cabinets and musical instruments.
Hickory is a slow growing tree that can take up to 200 years to mature. One of the hardest and strongest hardwoods makes this species more difficult to work with. Sporting goods, cabinets and ladders are a few applications for hickory as well as using the chips for smoking meat.
Hard Maple trees like to grow in the colder regions and have bright, colourful leaves in the autumn. This species is also known for their excellent sap used in the manufacture of Maple syrup. The wood colour varies from a dark reddish brown to a creamy white. Curly and Birds-eye maple are not as abundant and therefore more expensive. Maple has a wider variety of uses from butcher blocks to gymnasium floors and is extremely resistant to wear.
Soft maples like warmer weather than the hard maple family. Trees average a height of 60-80 feet. Generally, soft maple has the same properties as hard maple but is 25% less hard. Soft maple can be used as a substitute for hard maple. It can also be stained to resemble other species. You will find soft maple mainly used for furniture, paneling and kitchen cabinets.
Similar in appearance to white oak with generally a straight grain and coarse texture. Red oak varies in colour from light brown to a pinkish brown. Red oak has been used for centuries in barrel making due to the high quantities of tannin (the Celtic word for Oak).
The Walnut tree is on of the largest trees in it's family growing so rapidly that it can reach a height of 20 feet in only 10 years. The leaves on the tree are very aromatic and can cause drowsiness or nausea. Like the roots, the young bark, and the unripe husk of the fruit, the leaves contain astringent matter producing a dark brown dye, which does not require mordents. In most cases Walnut wood is steamed to bring out the rich brown colour. Walnut's wood has mainly been used in the manufacture of gun stocks but is also used for furniture and flooring.
Although their growth rate is slow the white oak can grow up to 100 feet high with a mature spread of 90 feet. White Oaks are very resistant to drought and heat living up to 800 years. These trees grow in thick forests and have heavy thick bark. As the wood is water resistant it is excellent material for building ships, barrels and casks. The wood varies from light to dark brown with beautiful grain. Other uses for this wood are flooring, caskets and cabinets.