Quarter-sawn cherry is sawn to produce as much straight grain in the resulting lumber as possible, which can be seen clearly in the above sample. In addition to the distinctive grain pattern this also makes the lumber very stable. Cherry heartwood varies from a rich red to a reddish-brown color while the sapwood is nearly white. The sapwood is narrower in old-growth trees and wider in second-growth trees.
Bamboo is not actually wood, but rather a grass with no woody material in its stem. However, bamboo is becoming increasingly popular for its attractive grain and resilience. Natural bamboo that gets formed into a wood product is pale yellow in color, but bamboo product manufacturers often add color to the material to offer in different shade options. By woodworking standards, bamboo is not necessarily difficult to work with, but depending on the species, it may require some special care.
African Mahogany is an exotic wood with a color range from pale to deep reddish brown. The grain can be straight but is typically interlocking. This streaked grain can produce beautiful dark and light bands of color when finished. Working with this wood is generally easy, but tearing can occur due to the interlocking grain of this wood species.
Teak is a closed-grain hardwood with high natural oil and silica content. It is one of the hardest, strongest and most durable of all wood species. Teak, naturally, is very weather tolerant and resistant to rotting, making it an ideal wood for outdoor and marine projects.
Walnut is a beautiful, strong and versatile wood. The wood ranges in color from light to dark brown to chocolate brown; walnut wood is usually known for its warm and rich color. Although this sample pictured above has been bleached, it still maintains its fine, straight grain pattern. This wood has been popular in the creation of furniture not only because it is aesthetically pleasing, but it is also durable, long lasting, and able to be shaped and finished into elaborate curves.
Hickory is the heaviest, hardest, and strongest of all North American hardwoods. The wood can run from a very light blonde color to a deep rich brown. Hickory sapwood is white to cream-colored. Hickory has a coarse straight grain that can be wavy on occasion. The hardness of hickory lumber makes it an ideal candidate for flooring projects. Hickory is a dry wood and, as such, accepts stains and adhesives readily and will finish to a lustrous shine.