If you are looking for a quality hardwood lumber for your next woodworking project, consider using cherry wood.
Cherry wood is an excellent choice for any number of woodworking applications, including fine furniture, cabinet-making, paneling, musical instruments, boat interiors, and hardwood floors. It can also be used for wood carving.
You don’t need stain for real cherry wood – that is not encouraged by makers of fine furniture. Cherry doesn’t really need stain, especially dark cherry wood, because it will darken by itself as it ages. The stain can also make the wood appear blotchy.
Cherry wood stain is sometimes used on other types of wood to mimic cherry, such as Alder wood, however, but why not use the real thing?
About the Cherry Tree
The cherry tree has been used for its fruit since prehistoric times. The cherry was originally found in Europe, west Asia, and northern Africa. They were introduced to England by King Henry the VIII after he had tasted them on a trip to Flanders, Belgium.
Despite the apocryphal tale of young George Washington chopping down his father’s cherry tree, cherry trees are not indigenous to North America. They were brought over to Brooklyn, New York (called “New Netherland” at the time) by the Dutch in the 1600s.
Two main types of cherries are used in agriculture, the sweet cherry, which is the typical of cherry you’d get in the fruit section of the supermarket. The second type is the sour cherry, which is very common in cooking, such as tarts, pies, and jams. The sweet and sour cherry trees don’t cross-pollinate.
Many other types of cherry trees exist and have fruit of various levels of edibility.
Types of Cherry Wood
The most popular sweet cherry tree also gets used extensively for its hardwood, but other variations of cherry trees are also made into lumber by various manufacturers.
One such variation of cherry wood is American black cherry. This variation of cherry is grown mostly in the eastern part of the United States as well as southeast Canada. The fruit is not large and red but much smaller and more purple in color. It is a bit bitter so used more for jelly and beverages such as liqueurs.
The bark of the American black cherry tree has also been used in herbal medicine to treat bronchitis by American colonists.
5 Benefits of Cherry Wood
Cherry wood has many benefits when used for woodworking projects. Here are just some of the positives of cherry wood:
1. The Wood is Strong and Durable
As a hardwood, cherry is very tough and sturdy. While it is not as hard as woods like maple, it is still pretty strong. This means it is much less likely to dent such as softwoods like Pine. Cherry is therefore an excellent choice for installations such as hardwood flooring, built-in bookshelves, or kitchen cabinets.
2. Once Sanded, Cherry Has a Smooth Finish
Cherry wood texture becomes almost glasslike when sanded, which is why cherry is known for its beautiful finish. This shows off the attractive, fine grain that is often decorated with brown flecks and whorls.
3. The Color of Cherry is Beautiful
Like mahogany, cherry wood has a reddish tint, though not as deep or purplish. Because of its warm color, cherry wood makes beautiful furniture as well as musical instruments.
The sapwood of cherry is white, which can either be removed or included in a finished project to add depth and interest.
And, as mentioned above, cherry wood will deepen its color as it ages, as well as in response to light. This makes it a beautiful wood as it matures.
4. Cherry Wood is Easy to Work With
Because cherry wood is strong but not overly tough, you can work on it easily by hand as well as with power tools. It takes nails quite well and also works well with glue.
5. Cherry Wood Provides Excellent Value
Cherry isn’t super cheap, but it is also not super expensive like some fine hardwoods. It is therefore a good choice for homeowners who, for example, want sturdy and attractive kitchen cabinets without overspending.
You Can’t Go Wrong with Cherry Wood
Cherry wood is an excellent material to use for all sorts of woodworking projects. Whether you are building new furniture, replacing your kitchen cabinets, or starting some wood carving, cherry wood is an excellent choice. It is an attractive yet reasonably affordable hardwood that comes with a natural reddish tone that only gets better with age.