Kinds of Wood

Wood Species


What is the difference between hardwoods and softwoods?



Hardwoods are deciduous, the botanical group of trees that have broad leaves, produce a fruit or nut, and generally go dormant in the winter. there are hundreds of hardwood species in the United States. together, all the hardwood species represent 40 percent of the trees in the United States.




In contrast, softwoods, or conifers, from the Latin word meaning ¨cone-bearing,¨ have needles. Widely available softwoods include cedar, fir, hemlock, pine, redwood and spruce. 


A relative of birch grows from Alaska to Southern California. It ranks third behind oak and pine as the wood most commonly used for ready-to-finish furniture. No distinct grain pattern with a finishing smoothly and takes stain well.


Parawood is a Native tree os the Amazon region of South America. Information about Parawood can be traced back to Christopher Columbus. It was during his second visit to South America, he wondered at the heavy black ball the natives were using in games, balls that were made from the vegetable gum of the Parawood tree. The tree is cut for processing in the manner syrup is tapped from the Maple tree is planted in its place. It has a distinctive grain pattern and takes most finishes well.