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Prunus spp.

Prunus spp. of the family Rosaceae --- but "Gummy cherry" is not a species, it is a figure in cherry caused by excessive gum veins that run up and down the growth rings and sometimes causes structural weakness in the wood. I am only familiar with it in American black cherry but it may well occur in other varieties of cherry.

my samples:

both sides of a sample plank of gummy black cherry / Prunus seratina --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site. This sample was sold to David as a burl but it is not; it's a crotch area with the kind of gum inclusions that make it "gummy cherry"

end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above

NOTE:All of the samples below were contributed to the site by Gary Merlie, whom I thank. Just as a side note, when I got these I had forgotten that Gary said he was going to be sending me some and when I opened the box and started taking the pieces out my first thought was that they were bubinga. In some cases they look remarkably like kevazinga (rotary cut bubinga) in both color and figure.

this is a composite shot of all the pieces Gary sent, before I did any sanding on them --- you can see that some of them have a moderate patina that has been sanded off in the pics below. HUGE enlargments are present

4 very thin slices off of different sections. I was interested to see that although the gum veins can cause structural weakness and allow easy separation, on these 4 thins there was no sign of that even thought the gum veins are extensive on some of them. HUGE enlargements are present

the three pieces that I sanded down to get fine grain details --- HUGE enlargements are present

end grain shots of the 3 pieces directly above

end grain closeup and END GRAIN UPDATE of the left-most piece directly above --- these show the rays very clearly

end grain closeup of the middle piece directly above

one of the end grain closeups of the piece directly above and the associated END GRAIN UPDATE

a couple of side grain closeups of the pieces directly above --- I took these because these particular side areas were perfectly quartersawn and really show the ray flakes nicely.

a face grain closeup of a 2"x2" area ---- HUGE enlargements are present

a couple more pieces from the set --- these are sanded but not as fully as the 3 pieces in the set above

end grain shots of the 2 pieces directly above

end grain closeups of the pieces directly above

side grain closeups of the pieces directly above

gummy American black cherry veneer

web pics:
many of these are from Gary Merlie who provided most of my own samples up above

a surface-finished planks, moistened for the pic


two pics and a closeup of a gummy slab

bookmatched thins

gummy cherry flooring --- HUGE enlargements are present

cribbage boards

jewelry box top

chest of drawers and night stand with gummy cherry drawer fronts

key holder

cabinet door

table and drawer --- I notice that even the legs are made from gummy cherry

bowl listed as gummy cherry. This does not have the long veins that you see on many pieces but it does have numerous short gum inclusions. NOTE: I have it from knowledgeable correspondent Rob Mathison that this is NOT "gummy" cherry, and the discolored sections are not gum inclusion but rather "bear paw" (aka "bear claw") cherry. I have a write-up on the bear claw figure here: bear claw