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Facts About Wood & Trees 1

There are two types of trees that it is impossible to tell how old they are by counting their growth rings. Trees produce growth rings because of the distinguishable temperature changes that occur over a yearly cycle causing their growth to slow down and speed up. Johnny J W Morlan
October 8 2004

Trees in certain tropical regions that have a consistent year round climate where growth is ongoing do not form pronounced growth rings. Trees that are endogenous, the majorities of which is some specie of Palm tree {monocotyledons}, which grow by adding new material inwards, do not produce growth rings.;

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I have more than 21 years of experience working with wood and have worked more than 500 different species of wood. I normally keep more than 125 species in stock. ;

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I have studied hundreds of woodworking magazine articles and more than 230 books on woodworking by as many as 190 authors. In addition I have studied numerous books and magazine articles on art, business, marketing, advertising and webmastering. I consult with both individuals and companies {World Tree Technologies, Impact Group New York, & B. K. Brown Designs} on the best wood, procedures and finishing techniques to use in the production of their wooden projects or products and how to advertise their products. ;

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Facts About Wood & Trees 1
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Author
Johnny W. Morlan
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For several years, I have complied facts on wood and trees. Here are 79 that I will share with you. There are 40 on this page and 39 on Facts About Wood & Trees 2. I add to and update it frequently. Some are pretty astounding.

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* The oldest workable wood/lumber on earth is Ancient Kauri {Agathis australis}. The trees from ancient forests on North Island, New Zealand have been buried under peat moss since the last ice age. They are well preserved and are now being dug up from the tundra. They have been radio carbon dated to approximately 30,000 - 50,000 years old. Of coarse, 50,000 years is the ultimate limit of radio carbon dating so it is quite possible that these trees could be older! ;

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It is estimated that the trees were growing approximately 12 - 20 centuries before they were buried by the ice. Some of the trees have a circumference of approximately 40 foot and heights of almost 200 foot. The Ancient Kauri trees are native to New Zealand and are not found anywhere else in the world. The wood/lumber from these trees can be purchased from, Ancientwood, LTD. Each piece of Ancient Kauri wood/lumber purchased, comes with a Certificate Of Authenticity.

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 * It is not uncommon for a Pohutukaw, New Zealand Christmas tree {Metrosiderosis excelsa} to have multiple trunks. An ancient Pohutukaw named Te Waha O Rerekohu, is growing on the grounds of the Te Waha O Rerekohu School in Te Araroa that has 22 trunks! It is approximately 65 foot tall and is over 600 years old. ;

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* Balsa {Ochroma pyramidale} is the lightest and softest commercially sold wood in the world. It's average specific gravity averages .16. Note: There are 4 other woods that are lighter, but none of them are suitable for any purpose. They are extremely weak and are not actually anything like wood as far as looks, feel and texture. ;

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* The world's largest, recorded harvested burl was a Redwood {Sequoia sempervirens}, located near Big Lagoon in Humboldt County, California in 1944. It was approximately 105 foot in circumference {over 33 foot in diameter}, nine feet tall at the crown and weighed 60 tons. Seven redwoods up to six foot in diameter were growing out of it. It took four men about a month to harvest and make it into veneer stock. ;

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* Not all species of wood floats in water. In order to sink in water the specific gravity of the wood, has to be 1.00 or more. The 27 below sink.

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Kiln Dried 6% - 12% Moisture Content
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African Blackwood - {Dalbergia melanoxylon} Average Specific Gravity 1.18
Billian - {Eusideroxylon zwageri} Average Specific Gravity 1.17
Black Ironwood - {Olea laurifolia} Average Specific Gravity 1.08
Brazil Ironwood - Caesalpinia ferrea} Average Specific Gravity 1.18
Brazilwood - {Caesalpinia echinata} Average Specific Gravity 1.22
Burma Ironwood - {Xylia xylocarpa} Average Specific Gravity 1.26
Ceylon Ironwood - {Mesua ferrea} Average Specific Gravity 1.10
CocoBolo Rosewood - {Dalbergia retusa} Average Specific Gravity 1.11
Desert Ironwood - {Olneya tesota} Average Specific Gravity 1.13
East Indian Satinwood, Ceylon - {Chloroxylon swietenia} Average Specific Gravity 1.02
Ebony - {Diospyrus crassiflora} Average Specific Gravity 1.03
Ekki - {Lophira alata} Average Specific Gravity 1.03
Greenheart - {Ocotea rodiaei} Average Specific Gravity 1.03
IPE - {Tabebuia serratifolia} Average Specific Gravity 1.09
Kingwood Rosewood - {Dalbergia cearensis} Average Specific Gravity 1.18
Knobthorn - {Acacia nigrescens} Average Specific Gravity 1.17
Leadwood - {Krugiodendron ferreum} Average Specific Gravity 1.29
Lignum Vitae - {Guaiacum officinale} Average Specific Gravity 1.34
Macassar Ebony - {Diospyros celebica} Average Specific Gravity 1.07
Marblewood - {Diospyros marmorata} Average Specific Gravity 1.03
Mountain Mahogany - {Cercocarpus ledifolius} Average Specific Gravity 1.11
Quebracho - {Schinopsis balansae} Average Specific Gravity 1.26
Satine, Bloodwood - {Brosimum paraense} Average Specific Gravity 1.01
Snakewood - {Piratinera guianensis} Average Specific Gravity 1.37
Sucupira - {Bowdichia nitida} Average Specific Gravity 1.01
White Topped Box - {Eucalyptus quadrangulata} Average Specific Gravity 1.01
Womara - {Swartzia leiocalycina} Average Specific Gravity 1.27

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* Bamboo, although often tree like, is actually not a species of tree. ;

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* The whitest wood in the world is Holly {Ilex opaca}. The Silver Striped Holly seems to produce the whitest wood of all the species of Holly. To produce the whitest wood, the best time to cut down Holly tress is in the winter when the sap is lower, and then mill and kiln dry it before summer. ;

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* The blackest wood in the world is Ebony {Diospyros crassiflora}. ;

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* Not all wood that comes from hardwood {flowering} broadleaf trees is hard and wood that comes from softwood {conifers} cone-bearing trees is soft. There are exceptions to this. For instance Balsa {Ochroma pyramidale} and Basswood {Tilia americana} are hardwoods even though they are extremely soft. The southern pines {Pinus strobus} are softwoods but are moderately hard and much harder than Balsa or Basswood. ;

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* Osage Orange {Maclura pomifera} is the species of wood that produces the most heat when burned, approximately 33 million BTU's per 20% air dried moisture content cord. A cord of wood is 4 foot wide x 4 foot high x 8 foot long {128 cubic foot} and has on average 80 cubic foot of burnable wood, the rest is just air space. ;

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* The most recently discovered tree specie is the Wollemi Pine, {Wollemia nobilis}. It was discovered in September 1994, by, a New South Wales National Parks officer named David Noble in a secluded area in the Blue Mountains of the Wollemi National Park, approximately 124 miles west of Sydney Australia. The total count of the wild mature trees is fewer than a hundred. The largest one is a little over 131 foot tall and a little short of 4 foot in diameter. The species is from the Araucariaceae family of conifers which are around 200 million years old, one of the oldest on earth. ;

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In October of 2005, 292 five year old, 6 foot 6 inch to almost 10 foot tall cultivated Wollemi Pine trees from the Royal Botanic Gardens in Sydney Australia, were auctioned off by Sotheby's Auction House, selling from $2000 - $7000 each, with one bidder paying $115,000 for a set of trees. The auction took in $1.17 million. ;

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Sometime in the spring of 2006, Wollemi Pine trees ranging in height from 16 inches to a little under 5 foot will be available to the general public at reasonable prices through retail outlets. ;

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* White Oak {Quercus alba} is the species of wood that is easiest to steam bend. With thin stock {1/8 inch or thinner} you can bend it, into an extremely small {tight} radius. ;

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* The name Ironwood is actually a slang term given to the hardest wood of an area, region or country. There are over 80 species of wood in the world, referred to or having the word Ironwood in them. ;

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* The heaviest and the hardest wood in the world is Snakewood {Piratinera guianensis}. It's specific gravity averages 1.30. ;

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* The tree with the world's greatest recorded root depth is a Wild Fig {Ficus natalensis}, located at Echo Caves, close to the town of Ohrigstad, Transvaal, located in South Africa. One of its roots goes down 393 foot 8 3/8 inches. ;

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* The Ombu {Phytolacca dioica} tree, looks like a tree but is actually not a tree specie, it is a bush. It grows in Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay. The Ombu can live with very little water, can survive violent storms, insect attacks and intense heat. Its wood is so moist it will not burn and so spongy the tree can be cut down with a knife. Its trunk can have a diameter of 16 foot and the total overall height can reach 60 foot. ;

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* Palm Sunday was named after the Palm tree {Phoenix dactylifera} because people took branches of Palm trees with them to greet Jesus Christ in Jerusalem {John 12:13}. ;

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* There are 23 names of trees {below} mentioned in the Bible. ;

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The one passage, Isaiah 41:17-20 has seven trees mentioned in it. It reads I will put in the desert the cedar and the acacia, the myrtle and the olive. I will set pines in the wasteland, the fir and the cypress together, so that people may see and know, may consider and understand, that the hand of the LORD has done this, that the Holy One of Israel has created it. ;

Acacia - {Acacia confusa} - Isaiah 41:17 - 20
Almond - {Amygdalus communis} - Numbers 17:1 - 8
Almug - {Pterocarpus santalinus} - 1 Kings 10:1 - 13
Apple - {Malus communis} - Joel 1:2 - 12
Broom - {Juniperus communis} - Psalm 120:4
Cedar - {Cedrus libani} - 1 Kings 6:1 - 38
Citron - {Ttetraclinis articulata} - Revelation 18:11 - 13
Cypress - {Cupressus macrocarpa} - Isaiah 41:17 - 20
Ebony - {Dalbergia melanoxylon} - Ezekiel 27:12 - 24
Fig - {Ficus carica} - Micah 4:1 - 5
Fir - {Abies cilicia} - Isaiah 41:17 - 20
Myrtle - {Myrtus communis} - Isaiah 41:17 - 20
Oak - {Quercus coccinea} - Ezekiel 27:1 - 9
Olive - {Olea europaea} - Deuteronomy 8:1 - 9
Palm, Edible Date Palm {Phoenix dactylifera} - John 12:13
Pine - {Pinus pinea} - 1 Kings 6:23 - 35
Planetree - {Platanus orientalis} - Genesis 30:25 - 43
Pomegranate - {Punica granatum} - 1 Samuel 14:1 - 3
Poplar - {Populas alba} - Psalm 137:1 - 3
Shittim, Setim - {Acacia seyal} - Exodus 26:15 - 28
Sycamore - {Acer pseudoplatanus} - Luke 19:4 - 6
Terebinth - {Pistacia terebinthus} - Hosea 4:10 - 13
Willow - {Salix safsaf} - Ezekiel 17:1 - 8 ;

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* The world's tallest natural uncut and living Christmas tree is 276 foot. It is a Eucalyptus {Eucalyptus regnansis} located in the Styx Valley, a tract of ancient forest in Tasmania, Australia. ;

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To date, the world's tallest cut down and decorated Christmas tree was a Fir of 215 foot. It was used to celebrate the Christmas of 1950 in the city of Seattle Washington. ;

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* The world's shortest tree specie is the Dwarf {Least} Willow {Salix herbacea}. It is rare to find one more than 2 1/2 inches tall. They are also dioecious, producing both male, yellow colored and female, red colored catkins. They have been found growing on frozen tundra in the Arctic. ;

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* The tree specie with the thickest bark is the Redwood {Sequoia gigantean}, its bark can be up to 24 inches thick. ;

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* The tree specie with the thickest bark other than a Redwood {Sequoia gigantea}, is the Coast Douglas Fir tree {Pseudotsuga menziesii}. On the older trees, the bark can be 8 - 12 inches thick. ;

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* The tree specie that produces the largest cones is the Sugar Pine {Pinus lambertiana}, ranging in size from 12 to 24 inches in length and 4 to 5 inches in diameter. ;

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* Lignin is the substance found in wood that helps determine how hard the wood will be. The more Lignin present, the harder the wood and vice versa, the less present, the softer the wood. ;

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* The bark of the Cork Oak {Quercus suber} is used to produce cork wine stoppers). The species grows in Northwest Africa and Southwest Europe with Algeria, Morocco, Portugal and Spain, manufacturing the majority of the world's supply. ;

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* Up until a few years ago, the world's oldest living tree, a Bristlecone Pine {Pinus longaeva}, named the Methuselah was located in the Great Basin National Park, California. It is approximately 4,844 years old. It is also the tallest living {55 foot} Bristlecone Pine. Now there may be at least two trees that are older! ;

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With John White's refined measurement techniques of today {see below}, The Lime {Tilia cordata}, in the Silkwood at Westonbirt Arboretum (Near Tetbury, Gloucester, U.K.) is probably around 6000 years old. ;

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The Fortingall Yew {Taxus baccata}, in Glen Lyon, Perthshire, Scotland, might be as much as 9000 years old. The usual way of calculating a trees age by counting the annual rings in the trunk or by carbon dating, are not accurate when it comes to Yews because a Yews trunk tends to hollow with age, while it continues to grow by rooting its branches and wrapping them around itself. There is even documentation of the formation of aerial roots growing inside the hollow trunk. Another reason are Yews have been known to stop growing for long periods of time, {documented 325 years}, thus having no growth rings for that period. ;

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John White's method of estimating a tree's age is by measuring its trunk circumference approximately 5 feet from ground level. He had access to and studied more than 100,000 tree measurements and multitudes of growth ring patterns from broken or cutoff stumps and concluded that growth rings are closer together on the outside portion of the stump. His technique shows that trees grow at different rates in the three phases of their lifetime, Formative, Middle Age and Senescence (Old Age}. With the evidence he has complied, tables of expected growth, relative to trunk size have been made for numerous common trees. ;

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* There are two types of trees that it is impossible to tell how old they are by counting their growth rings. Trees produce growth rings because of the distinguishable temperature changes that occur over a yearly cycle causing their growth to slow down and speed up. ;

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Trees in certain tropical regions that have a consistent year round climate where growth is ongoing do not form pronounced growth rings. Trees that are endogenous, the majorities of which is some specie of Palm tree {Arecaceae, Palmae or Palm Family), which grow by adding new material inwards, do not produce growth rings. ;

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* In 1964, after his coring tool broke and getting permission from the U.S. Forest Service, a research scientist to get an accurate age measurement cut down a Bristlecone Pine {Pinus longaeva}, in Great Basin National Park, since named Prometheus! It turned out the tree was over 4,950 years old making it older than the Bristlecone Pine named Methuselah, which at the time was 4,803 years old. He had not only found the oldest living thing on the planet, but he had also killed it. A cross-section of the tree is on view at the Great Basin National Parks, visitor center in California.  

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Continued On Facts About Wood & Trees 2 ;

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 Hello & Welcome! Woodworking Artist Johnny {J W} Morlan’s Newsletter   Johnny has more than 20 years of experience working with wood and has worked more than 500 different species of wood. He normally keeps more than 125 species in stock.

 Hello, Welcome To My Gallery   Hello, Welcome To My Gallery! I Am Very Pleased To Have You As A Guest I Hope You Have A Pleasant Experience.

 J W's Woodworking Column   I started this column because of my desire to share my woodworking experiences and to teach and help people become better woodworkers. I have more than 20 years of experience working with wood and have worked more than 500 different species of wood. I normally keep more than 125 species in stock.

 Woodworking Artist Johnny {J W} Morlan Personal Quotes   * "Just because a woodworker makes an object from a beautiful figured piece of wood does not make them a woodworking artist or the piece a work of art. Nature created the wood, not them! True wood art has intricateness!" Johnny W Morlan

 Facts About Wood & Trees 2   * The tree specie with the largest undivided leaves is the Bigleaf Magnolia {Magnolia macrophylla}. The leaves are 7 to 12 inches wide and 12 to 32 inches long. * In an article written in 2004 and featured in the weekly magazine Nature, it states that theoretically, the tallest possible height that any tree could obtain is 400-425 foot. This is be

 Box Construction & Wood Finish Techniques   Johnny has more than 20 years of experience working with wood and has worked more than 500 different species of wood. He normally keeps more than 125 species in stock. Some of Johnny's creations have been bought by or given as presents to professional people, foreign dignitaries of state, celebrities and even the President and the First Lady of th

 How Woodworking Differs From Other Art Mediums   The art medium of woodworking differs from all other art mediums in numerous ways. In this day and age, the woodworker has to be environmentally conscientious because in today's society the rainforests and the depletion of trees is a major concern.

 Five Star Reviews Magazine's Review/Write Up Of J W Morlan's Unique Wood Gifts   Five Star Reviews Magazine, A National United States Publication That Reviews Travel Destinations, Restaurants, Spas, Products, Services & Events In The Realm Of Business & Entertainment. Their Staff Writers Have Worked For FoodTV, Travel & Leisure, Gourmet Magazine, Vogue, Elle, USA Today & Oprah.

 Information About Custom Made Or Commissioned Orders   Custom Made Boxes, Such As Jewelry, Music, Keepsake, Treasure, Cremation, Recipe File & Cigar Humidor. Custom Made Office Pieces, Such As Desk Sets, Desktop Business Card Holders, Multiple Business Reception Area Desktop Business Card Holders, Pens, Pen Sets, Letter Openers, Single, Double, Triple & Quadruple Level Letter Trays.

 Facts About Wood & Trees 1   There are two types of trees that it is impossible to tell how old they are by counting their growth rings. Trees produce growth rings because of the distinguishable temperature changes that occur over a yearly cycle causing their growth to slow down and speed up.

 Story: What Started Me Wood Collecting?   I had been working in a lumberyard and hardware store for about a year, it was 1983. One day I went out to the lumberyard part to snoop around. I went way back into one of the lumber storage buildings and found a large pile covered with a dirty old canvas. When I removed the canvas, I found a bunch of old, dirty and dusty lumber.

 Payment Options, Shipping & Handling Charges For Orders Outside Of USA   At The Beginning Of Each Pieces Description, Is The Shipping Weight In Pounds. Prices Include Insured Shipping & Handling To USA Addresses.

 Business Information   "Excellence is the result of caring more than others think is wise, risking more than others think is safe, dreaming more than others think is practical and expecting more than others think is possible." Mac Anderson Johnny has owned and operated his business full time since 1989. Johnny started the business because of the love and passion of worki

 Woodworking Artist Johnny {J W} Morlan Studio Shop   It is no secret that for 23 years Johnny's shop studio was 405 square foot or smaller in size, {new shop studio is 750 square foot}. All of his tools are average priced. Even with the shops the size they were, he still built small wine, humidor and stereo cabinets. Johnny takes great pleasure in showing and teaching hobbyist woodworkers that have a

 Article: Tips For Artists & Craftspeople   Take these for instance, on the Internet, Artmajeur, WWAR, Yessy and Fine-Art. Sure they receive an immense amount of visitors per month, Artmajeur has over 18,900 artists and over 408,000 pieces of art, WWAR has almost 16,000 artists and over 100,000 pieces of art, Yessy has at least 15,000 artists and over 167,000 pieces of art and Fine-Art has 5

 Article: Lumber Grades   Lumber Grades & Ways Lumber Is Priced & Sold, Author Johnny W. Morlan: In this article I will not go into explaining the rules of grading hardwood or softwood lumber as they are very complicated and lengthy. I will list the grades that are sold, the dimensions that are available and the ways retailers price and sell lumber.

 Article: Wood Movement & Projects   How To Insure Wood Movement Doesn't Ruin Your Project, Author Johnny W. Morlan: I place each species of wood into one of four wood movement categories, they are minute, small, average and great.

 Article: Wood Movement & Environment   Your Indoor House Environment & Wood Movement, Author Johnny W Morlan: Wood is either classified hardwood or softwood. Hardwood comes from {flowering} broadleaf trees. Softwood comes from {conifers}cone-bearing trees. There are exceptions to this. For instance Balsa and Basswood are hardwoods even though they are extremely soft.

Artworks Styles : Contemporary - Functional Art
Artworks Topics : Woodworking
Artworks Media : Wood



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