Discover the kinds of wood. The use of wood for constructional structures, floors and furniture have been in vogue for centuries now. Although the advent of cement, concrete and metals have reduced the usage of wood to a large extent, wood is still irreplaceable to get a classy look or long lasting furniture. There are many different kinds of wood grown and found in the American and Asian continents. Two larger subdivisions in wood variety are Hardwood and Softwood. Another variety known as the Tropical Hardwood is also recognized in the US. Hardwoods are usually trees that bear leaves as compared to softwood trees that bear cones.
As per quality, all wood can be divided into two kinds of wood, Select Lumber and Common Lumber. Select lumber grade A and B are best for indoor designs and construction, as finishing and polishing are much easier. C grade lumber has minor defects such as small knots while D grade select lumber contains much larger knots and pores. Common lumber is graded from no. 1 to No.5. No. 1 grade can be used for indoor use as blemishes are fewer. No.2 through 4 have much larger blemishes and knots but No. 5 is only used for constructional purposes where appearance and looks are not important.
There are several hardwood trees that are in regular use such as Oak, Poplar, Cherry and Maple. Oak is the most popular hardwood tree and almost sixty species are found in the US. Oak comes in two flavors known as White and Red. Both texture and grain are quite prominent in Oak lumber. In maple species, Sugar Maple and Hard Rock Maple are commonly used. Maple wood is well-known for being highly shock-proof. The fine yet even texture and grain of Maple wood is beautiful to look at and hence often used as the backs of musical instruments such as Violin and Guitar. Cherry, Rose, Teak and Walnut are also used regularly. So hardwood kinds of wood are chosen by many over metals, for interior decoration.
Softwood is primarily used for structural purposes and there are several different types of trees in popular usage such as Birch, Pine, Ash and Hickory. Softwood has very nice textures and they resist swelling or shrinking during winter and rainy seasons and hence, they are an automatic choice for floors and roofs. These kinds of wood are usually not used for decoration and beautification except knotted Pine wood.
Tropical Hardwood trees include Teak, Wenge, Mahogany and Rosewood. These woods are usually imported from the Asian continent for use in the American and Western countries. These tropical kinds of wood are used in furniture due to widely varying texture and grain.
All in all, wood is a prudent choice when it comes to replacing metals and other building materials as wood does not rust or rot and they can be in use for centuries without any damage, whatsoever. But proper knowledge of the wood being used and its capabilities are a must before going forward with any project with wood.