North American Cherry
Cherry is probably one of the most well know woods.
It has been used for many different purposes including some outside
of woodworking. It's bark has been used for medicinal purposes,
and occasionally for making tonic.
Because of cherry's strength and stability, it is a popular wood for
furniture makers, pattern makers, woodturners, musical instruments,
professional and medical instruments, and is even used by the printing
trade to back electrotypes and zinc etchings.
This popular wood can be found in Midwestern and eastern
United States. It's supply isn't highly abundant, and it is primary
harvested for high grade lumber where it's attractive color can
be displayed. The price of cherry is based on the absence of gum
pockets, pin knots, and figure. It's grade is determined by the
amount of figure that the wood has. Cherry without any figure is
reportedly hard to find.
Black Cherry is the largest of all North American
Cherry trees, reaching heights of 100 feet (30m). The average height
for these trees is about 80 feet (24m). The tree can be harvested
after 35 to 40 years of growth, and they can reach full growth after
100 years. Although cherry is well know for its wood, it is also
know for it's spring blossoms. Beautiful white blossoms adorn its
branches when it reaches full bloom in middle April to middle March.
The heartwood of cherry trees is the most popular
area used as it has the reddish color that cherry is associated
with. The sapwood ranges from a whitish color, to a light reddish
brown. Some flooring manufacturers steam the wood to bleed the red
color of the heartwood into the sapwood. Cherry has a relatively
fine grain and often has a striking wavy appearance to it that is
highly favorable. The wood is highly resistant to decay, although
the sapwood is susceptible to attacks from the furniture beetle.
Cherry has excellent stability and is warps or moves very little
Cherry tree blossoms