walnut:

Walnut wood comes from the genus juglandaceae, which encompases several different types of trees. The most prevalent are English walnut, black walnut and white walnut (butternut) trees. The most prominent type of walnut tree used for lumber is the American black walnut (Juglans nigra), which can reach heights of 50-75'. The wood has a rich history, in use since colonial times.

 

There are two different components to walnut wood. The outer layer is called sapwood and the inner layer is called the heartwood. Walnut sapwood has a creamy white color. The walnut heartwood has a more chocolate brown color, with variations having more or less red and purple tones, depending on the individual tree. Walnut is relatively easy to work with, allowing the wood to be shaped and sanded into many shapes. It is inherently strong, stable and shock resistant. Compared to other wood types, walnut does not shrink or swell easily, which means the cracks that form as the piece of wood ages tend to be small.

 

ash:

Ash is classified in the genus Fraxinus, which also includes the olive and lilac families. In North America, these can be some of the tallest native trees, growing to heights exceeding 120 feet. 40 to 70 species of ash trees are native to Central and North America.

Ash is classified in the genus Fraxinus, which also includes the olive and lilac families. In North America, these can be some of the tallest native trees, growing to heights exceeding 120 feet. 40 to 70 species of ash trees are native to Central and North America.

butternut:

Butternut is part of the Walnut (juglans) family, and is also known as white walnut. Butternut is a native of North America, but is currently endangered from a disease caused by a fungus. The fruit of the butternut (the kernel) is especially high in fat, giving the tree its name.

monkey puzzle tree:

Also known as the Monkey Tail Tree, this is a tree native to central and southern Chile and western Argentina, where it has long been part of their culture. It is the national tree of Chile and is sometimes described as a living fossil. Once established, a monkey puzzle tree can live hundreds of years, and there are living monkey puzzle trees over 1,000 years old.

Monkey puzzle trees are conifers, or cone-producing trees, the hardiest of which grows in North America with the scientific name Araucaria araucana. Monkey puzzle trees can grow up to 130 feet tall, and can develop trunks with diameters over 6 feet across. Once harvested extensively in South America and valued for its long, straight trunks, the species has been protected since 1971 as a CITES Appendix 1 endangered species.

 

Wood from monkey puzzle trees has beautiful rings and grain which can produce dramatic and bold patterns. All the monkey puzzle wood I use has been from a single tree that was the largest monkey puzzle tree in seattle.

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