When people are choosing classic, authentic wood for their home’s new fluted molding, fireplace corbel designs, or custom kitchen cabinets, many Americans are opting for domestic wood options. There are many quality hardwoods to be found in North America, and supporting the domestic companies who grow and harvest that wood is a wonderful thought. To understand the difference between some of these common North American hardwoods, we’re going to briefly talk about the selection that we readily offer here at Enkeboll.
Poplar is great for applying various stains and paint colors over. While fine cuts of poplar can be found, it’s mostly a plain-looking, creamy-colored wood. Poplar is also among the softer hardwood species, so it’s not recommended for heavy-duty projects. It does work beautifully for a nice fluted molding or traditional corbels, which don’t sustain much wear and tear.
Highly durable maple can have beautiful, subtle grains in its typical creamy-white natural color. However, it looks heavenly with darker stains. Many people love to use a deep stain on maple wood to mimic woods like mahogany and cherry. Others like to celebrate this natural American wood by incorporating oak leaf and acorn motifs.
Oaks are a beautiful, plentiful North American wood. In fact, more than 52% of all North America’s hardwood trees are oak species. Oak woods are incredibly sturdy. Red Oak, in particular, is beautiful, having a slight pinkish undertone and more dramatic color variation than its white oak cousin. If you’re going for a particular stain, remember that the undertones of red oak will possibly affect the ultimate color of the stain.
The fine-grained cherry is a favorite to show off on cabinets and furniture. Cherry is usually pictured with a characteristic reddish-brown hue, but it can range to blonde tones as well. The color of the wood can often darken with age, so use caution. Cherry wood molding or trim looks lovely unstained or with a light coat as classic old-world vintage molding.
Much like poplar, alder is a simple, soft hardwood that is suitable for stains or a lovely coat of paint. But don’t totally discount its natural look. Especially in the southwestern U.S., knotty alder is often used for rustic-looking doors and kitchen fixtures.
Remember that with different grains and stains available, you can get pretty much any look you want out of these woods. Ask our experts at Enkeboll to see what we have in stock for you.