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CHERRY, MISC

Prunus spp.


Prunus spp of the family Rosaceae

Cherry is a wood that sometimes has interlocked grain but interestingly (to me anyway) it does not exhibit any of the normal visual clues that it is interlocked. I had a bunch of pics about that here but they cluttered up this page too much so I moved them to their own page here: INTERLOCKED GRAIN CHERRY

Prunus pennsylvanica (two n's) is a synonym of the accepted name Prunus pensylvanica (one n) and it is sometimes called "Pennsylvania cherry" but that's not really a valid name for it. Mark Peet tells me that "Pennsylvania cherry" usually refers to Black Cherry / Prunus serotina because the highest commercial quality cherry was Prunus serotina from PA. That species grows over the eastern half of the USA but for grade the best was from PA, The Poconos and the Alleghany regions in particular. As for Prunus pensylvanica, it grows more along the Appalachian Mountains in the east and a strip along the Rockies in the west. It is commercially, near non-existent but sometimes could be mistaken as a "Sweet cherry" / Prunus avium in the east.

my samples:


both sides of a sample plank of sweet cherry / Prunus avium --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site. It is a cultivar of this species that is known as bing cherry and is the one from which we get those delicious bing cherries.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of sour cherry / Prunus cerasus --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site. The vendor listed this as "flame grain" which is both incorrect and wildly optimistic. it is incorrect because the correct term would be "flame figure" not "flame grain" and optimistic because you have to look really close to see even a tiny amount of curl.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of sour cherry / Prunus cerasus --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by Mark Peet whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of sour cherry / Prunus cerasus --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by Mark Peet whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of mazzard cherry / Prunus avium --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by Mark Peet whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site. This species is also known as sweet cherry (among many other names)


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of bitter cherry / Prunus emarginata --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of bitter cherry / Prunus emarginata --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of bitter cherry / Prunus emarginata --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by Mark Peet whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of Japanese flowering cherry / Prunus yedoensis --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


perfectly quartersawn surface from one edge of the piece directly above, showing the nice little ray flakes that often occur in quartersawn cherry.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of Japanese flowering cherry / Prunus yedoensis --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a piece of Japanese flowering cherry / Prunus serrulata --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by Mark Peet whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site. Note that the first face was sanded to 240 grit and the second face was not and this accounts for minor differences in color between the two and the better resolution of the detail characteristics as seen in the first one.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a plank of Japanese flowering cherry / Prunus serrulata --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by Mark Peet whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of Japanese cherry / Prunus serrulata --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of Japanese cherry / Prunus subhirtella --- 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 species is also known as spring cherry, weeping cherry, and higan cherry


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


sample plank and end grain of Carolina laurel cherry / Prunus caroliniana


end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a quartersawn sample plank of Carolina laurel cherry / Prunus caroliniana --- all of these pics make this wood look somewhat less rich and colorful than it really is except for the end grain update which has the correct color


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of Carolina laurel cherry / Prunus caroliniana --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


both sides of a sample plank of quartersawn Carolina laurel cherry / Prunus caroliniana --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


face grain closeup showing the ray flakes


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of Carolina laurel cherry / Prunus caroliniana --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site. I note that the end grain characteristics of this sample are significantly different from those of the other four Prunus caroliniana above this one. I do not yet conclude from this that it is not properly identified but I'm doubtful.
LATER: I now note that this sample is essentially all sapwood and the sapwood end grain characteristics of the related species directly below have a somewhat similar look whereas the heartwood of that piece looks quite similar to other Prunus spp. Perhaps some Prunus spp. are unusual in that they have a noticbly different look in the sapwood than in the heartwood.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of English laurel cherry / Prunus laurocerasus --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of Portugese laurel cherry / Prunus lusitanica --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site. There is some botanical feature that lead to this being called a laurel but really it is a cherry and calling it just "Portugese laurel" as is sometimes done is somewhat incorrect and certainly misleading.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of Portugese laurel cherry / Prunus lusitanica --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site. There is some botanical feature that lead to this being called a laurel but really it is a cherry and calling it just "Portugese laurel" as done by the vendor of this sample is somewhat incorrect and certainly misleading.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


face grain closeup (showing ray flakes) andEND GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of myrtle leaf cherry / Prunus myrtifolia --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of pin cherry / Prunus pensylvanica --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contribution to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of pin cherry / Prunus pensylvanica --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


both sides of a sample plank of quartersawn pin cherry / Prunus pensylvanica


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of quartersawn pin cherry / Prunus pensylvanica --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contribution to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of quartersawn pin cherry / Prunus pensylvanica --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


sample plank and end grain listed as bitter cherry / Western wild cherry / Prunus emarginata


end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of choke cherry / Prunus virginiana --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of choke cherry / Prunus virginiana --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of choke cherry / Prunus virginiana --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by Mark Peet whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of red stinkwood (African cherry) / Prunus africana --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by Mark Peet whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


both sides of a sample plank of mahaleb cherry / Prunus mahaleb --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site.


end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above


END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


first face and the end grain of a sample of cherry / Prunus spp. This part of a collection which is discussed here: COLLECTION B. This is most likely Prunus serotina.


the second face, before and after slicing off 1/8" showing how the patina from aging is only surface deep.


end grain closeup and END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above.


both sides of a piece of bear claw cherry contributed by Rob Mathison whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site. On this pic and the ones below, HUGE enlargements are present. This is the only example I've ever seen of bear claw cherry, but the construct is unmistakable --- it is exactly the same "spiky indented grain" as that found in bear claw maple (which is so relatively common that it has its own page on this site).


end grain of the piece directly above and two closeups from the middle and right of the end


grain closeup from the left side of the piece directly above and the corresponding END GRAIN UPDATE


spalted plank (both sides) --- pics donated by John Brunelle (thank you John) who shares my belief that spalting is fairly rare in cherry. As you can see, the spalting in this plank has resulted in more of a rotten look than the kind of ink-pen lines that you see in, for example, spalted maple. I don't know what species of cherry this is.


I asked on the WoodBarter forum if anyone had ever seen spalted cherry and several people said they had and all agreed that the spalt lines in cherry, which ARE fairly rare, are relatively muddy, unlike for example the crisp blackline spalting one sees in maple. These pics were posted by one of the members to illustrate.




The pics in this section are of pieces provided by James Caraway, who had the wood up on a wood forum to see if anyone could ID the wood. A very knowledgeable sawyer said he thought it was cherry and in a very confident display of stupidity I jumped in and said I thought it was NOT cherry. James sent me these sample pieces and I'm now convinced it IS cherry. I don't think it's American black, but it might be. The face grain alone is pretty much enough to see that it's cherry (although I thought it might be pear and another fellow suggested madrone), and the end grain in particular is quite persuasive that it is cherry, but also suggests that it might not be American black. I AM puzzled by the apparent total lack of sapwood and that's another reason I think it's probably not American black.

First the pics James posted on the forum. Actually, he posted larger versions, which are here as the enlargements of these pics. The lack of sapwood is quite apparent on the log pics.



And now the cleaned-up sample pieces that James sent me:


small plank and end grain


end grain closeup of the piece directly above


face grain closeup and side grain closeup of the piece directly above --- both are rift cut surfaces, but on the side I found a section that was closer to quartersawn and shows some nice ray flakes


small slab and end grain


end grain closeup of the piece directly above


face grain closeup and side grain (quartersawn) closeup of the piece directly above

end of section on the pieces from James Caraway




veneer sold to me as European cherry. The very wide sapwood makes me slightly dubious about this being cherry, but the vendor is very reliable and this much sapwood is physically possible. The color of the wood is slightly richer than what shows up in these pics. HUGE enlargements are present.


these are all thick burl veneer pieces that I got in a mixed lot from a jewlery box maker who makes his own veneer from burls and spalted woods. I believe these to be American black cherry but do not know that for sure.



The Wood Book pics


flat cut, quartersawn, end grain
cherry, English (Prunus avium, also listed as ox-heart cherry) from The Wood Book --- both levels of enlargement are available for each of the 3 views


flat cut, quartersawn, end grain
cherry, woolly leaf (Prunus , mollis also listed as bitter cherry ) from The Wood Book --- both levels of enlargement are available for each of the 3 views


flat cut, quartersawn, end grain
cherry, wild red (Prunus pennsylvania, also listed as pigeon cherry, pin cherry, and bird cherry ) from The Wood Book --- both levels of enlargement are available for each of the 3 views.


flat cut, quartersawn, end grain
cherry, sour (Prunus cerasus, also listed as garden cherry) from The Wood Book --- both levels of enlargement are available for each of the 3 views


flat cut, quartersawn, end grain
cherry, holly leaved (Prunus ilicifolia, also listed as wild cherry and evergreen cherry) from The Wood Book --- both levels of enlargement are available for each of the 3 views. The ray flakes are exceptionall large on this sample.


flat cut, quartersawn, end grain
West Indian cherry (Prunus myrtifolia) from The Wood Book --- both levels of enlargement are available for each of the 3 views

web pics:

NOTE: a substantial number of the pics in this section that are just designated "cherry" are most likely American black cherry but since I don't know that for sure on any of them, I have left them here on this "misc" page.


slabs just listed as cherry


planks with wet and dry sections. In the order shown, they were listed as cherry, cherry, and European cherry / Prunus avium


flat cut planks just listed as cherry (most of these are most likely American black cherry) and some have been moistened for the pics, most have not


quartersawn planks (most of these are most likely American black cherry)


crotch plank


turning stock just listed as cherry --- color is unlikely


bowl blank and turning stock just listed as cherry


bowl blank listed as cherry stumpwood


figured veneer


spalted plank and two closeups; moistened for the pics. Like my own experience, and that shown in other "spalted" pics on this page, this exhibits more of a rotten look than the thin black lines one normally associates with "spalting"


veneer


figured veneer


veneer with a purple color that is just silly. I bought a lot from the vendor who puts up this picture and the color was normal cherry --- nothing like this pic; it's this kind of carelessness that got me started on this site in the first place.


pomelle figure veneer


ropey veneer


a curly piece, a set of planks, and a flat cut piece with high color (believable, but may have a finishing agent that improves the color)


curly cherry from a vendor known to exaggerate color pretty seriously


cherry pen blanks --- I find the yellow color highly unlikely


crotch slabs


crotch veneer


Asian cherry veneer


Asian curly cherry veneer closeup with enlargements


European cherry planks


European cherry veneer


veneer listed as European cherry / wild cherry / Prunus avium. The pieces are, in order, flat cut, flat cut figured, quartersawn, quartersawn figured


European cherry veneer closeup with enlargements --- just FYI, I've seen American black cherry that looks exactly like this


Argentine cherry plank and closeup


listed as Peruvian cherry, but I don't know if that's a true cherry or just a common name for something unrelated to cherry


listed as wild cherry


wild cherry and closeup


wild cherry, moistened for the pic


sour cherry flat cut, quartersawn, and end grain


sour cherry bowl blank and turning stock



the color on all these guitar kit pieces seems overly rich, but I cannot say for sure that it is false even though it is definitely outside my experience.



thin curly cherry (listed as quilted) laid out for a guitar kit


thin curly cherry (listed as quilted) laid out for a guitar kit, and a close up of one of the back pieces after it was moistened


thin curly cherry (listed as quilted) laid out for a guitar kit, and a close up of one of the back pieces after it was moistened

end guitar sets



veneery listed as figured flat cut cherry --- this figure is far stronger than anything I have ever personally experienced with cherry so I'm not fully convinced that it IS cherry. This is from a vendor who makes her veneer pics show extreme shine where none is actually present in the wood, so that may be part of why it doesn't look to me like cherry.


veneer listed as flat cut quilted cherry --- this figure is far stronger than anything I have ever personally experienced with cherry so I'm not fully convinced that it IS cherry. This is from a vendor who makes her veneer pics show extreme shine where none is actually present in the wood, so that may be part of why it doesn't look to me like cherry.


veneer listed as flat cut quilted cherry



bird's eye veneer --- cherry has a weak bird's eye figure compared to maple.



cat's paw veneer --- click to enlarge and you will see little patterns that look somewhat like a cat's paw; the first sample shows it best (when fully enlarged)



ropey plank


curly planks


curly planks and a closeup of one of them --- color seems overly rich, even if the planks are moistened


curly plank moistened for the pic


figured plank and closeup --- I'm doubtful about the color but can't say for sure that it's false.


figured planks --- figuring (usually curl, but sometime mottle) in cherry is usually far less pronounced than in many species


curly cherry veneer in a 4-way bookmatch --- the grain is much clearer in the enlargement.


quartersawn curly planks


planks listed as "compression curl" cherry. I don't know whether or not this is the same as "normal" curly cherry, but it appears to be different. I need to do reasearch.


curly veneer


figured veneer






burl and closeup


large cherry burl and some slabs cut from it


burl slab


cherry burl bowl shot at a woodworking show. Huge enlargements are present. I'm not sure about the color correction on this one. I can't remember exactly what it looked like and I must have had the camera set wrong when I took it because the original of this shot is clearly not correct. The owner had this labeled as "winged" but this is not the normal meaning of "winged" as regards turned bowls, although I have seen it used that way before (but not much compared to the normal meaning)


nested cherry burl bowls shot at a woodworking show. HUGE enlargements are present. I was very impessed by the coring on these. There had to have been very little waste between the bowls.


bowl blank


guitar set


wild cherry bowl


bowls made from various types (see pics) of cherry, turned and photographed by Tom Pleatman, whom I thank for these pics and other contributions to the site. Big enlargements are present.


vases; these are probably American black cherry but I don't know that for sure


wild cherry vase