Examples of Hardwood


It grows slowly compared to softwoods. So, hardwood is relatively expensive. However, there are exceptions. For example, gum is a hardwood that comes at a price comparable with most types of softwood.

Hardwood is durable (less likely to decay and rot), comes with close grain, and requires low maintenance.

As it comes with low sap content and good fire resistance, hardwood is commonly used for wooden flooring. However, hardwood flooring is also revered for its varied natural colors, styles, and perforation plate patterns.

It is also used for making furniture. However, not all types of hardwood are ideal for making furniture.

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The rosewood trees grow in tropical environments including countries such as Brazil, India, and Madagascar. Rosewood is durable when dried properly. It comes with white chalky deposits that may dull tools and present problems with finishing. However, it is one of the toughest woods.

Color – Heartwood can vary from golden brown to deep purplish brown, with darker brown streaks.

Density – Hard, heavy and strong.

Grain – Usually narrowly interlocked.

Common Uses – High-end furniture, musical instruments, veneer, and turned wood objects.

Finishing – Finishes well, but requires initial seal coats.


Teaks are tropical hardwood trees native to India, Myanmar (Burma), and Thailand. Teakwood is one of the hardest and most durable of all natural woods. It is resistant to rotting, sunlight, rain, frost, and snow, making it suitable for outdoor construction and furniture. However, it is expensive and sometimes hard to find.

Color – Heartwood is golden or medium brown and darkens with age.

Density – It is heavy and strong.

Grain – Grain is straight. Occasionally, it can be wavy or interlocked.

Common Uses – Boatbuilding, veneer, furniture, exterior construction, carving, and turnings.

Finishing – Finishes best with wood lacquer.

Beech trees are deciduous and native to temperate Europe, Asia, and North America. Beechwood is quite durable and resistant to abrasion and shock. Because beech steam-bends as readily as ash, carpenters love to work with this wood. It also provides an elegant and dated look to furniture. However, it is not dishwasher safe.

Color – Pink to reddish brown heartwood, sapwood is creamy to pink.

Density – Very hard and heavy.

Grain – Straight with a fine to medium uniform texture.

Common Uses – Chair legs and backs, crates/pallets, railroad ties, flooring, food containers, toys, musical instruments, and woodenware.

Finishing – Takes all finishes.

Cherry wood comes from the cherry fruit tree. Cherry wood has rich color, smooth grain, and flexibility, making it a popular choice for furniture manufacturers. It also steams easily, making it ideal for use in curved designs.

Color – The color is light pinkish brown when freshly cut. It darkens to a medium reddish brown over time.

Density – Stiff, strong, medium weight, and moderately hard.

Grain – Closed and straight.

Common Uses – Cabinetry, fine furniture, flooring, interior millwork, veneer, musical instruments, paneling, turned objects, and small specialty wood items.

Finishing – Light to natural finishes are recommended.


Maple trees are mostly native to Asia. But they are also found in Europe, North Africa, and North America. The maple wood is sturdy, resistant to splitting, and durable. It can be wiped clean with a damp cloth, making it ideal for kitchen furniture.

Color – The heartwood is typically a darker shade of reddish brown. Sapwood color ranges from nearly white to an off-white cream color. But it can be reddish or golden hue.

Density – Moderately hard but strong.

Grain – Closed and generally straight, but may be wavy.

Common Uses – Everything from furniture and woodenware to flooring and millwork.

Finishing – Takes all finishes.


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