Not all woods are the same. There are some with superior qualities. They are known as noble or precious woods. Some are very stable, others are also very resistant, others have beautiful colors and veins, and some are simply rare or in the past they were very difficult to obtain.
Noble woods have traditionally been used for furniture or joinery. There are few cases where expensive wood is used for rough uses, unless we find ourselves in places where that wood is abundant.
Common characteristics of precious woods
In most cases, hardwoods share some characteristics. Among them are usually:
- High Price. This means that its use has been largely limited to wealthy people. In ancient times, it was the nobility who could buy furniture made with precious woods.
- Slow-growing species. Most quality wood is partly because it is dense, heavy and stable. These conditions occur in trees that require slow growth, several decades in order to reach the ideal moment of cut. This, in turn, creates a shortage, which further increases the price.
- Many species, not all, are at risk. They are largely due to the aforementioned. A high price is an incentive for unscrupulous people to cut them, and the fact that they are slow to grow does not help.
- It is often said that precious woods have a special resistance to xylophagous insects. This is half true. Not everyone has. This resistance is related to issues such as density, resins, conditions in which they are maintained, etc.
- Durability and resistance. If kept in good condition, these woods and the furniture made with them will last for centuries.
Types of noble wood
Nut. It is the noble wood of reference in Spain. Its hue is close to chocolate. It is mainly used in carpentry, although it is also common to see it on the floor.
Ebony. It is well known for its dark, almost black color. Originally from the African continent, it was imported into Europe not only for its high quality, but also for the contrast it offered. We remember that this wood is used for the word carpentry, which is the art of building quality furniture.
Mahogany. It is considered by many to be one of the best woods in the world. Not only is it beautiful and of great quality, it is also very strong and easy to work with. Its colors vary between reddish and brown.
Oak. Within this type of wood, it is the most abundant and therefore also the cheapest. Its color varies from light brown, almost whitish, to darker brown. It is a very versatile wood and can be used in almost any field.
Rosewood. This type of wood is mainly used in carpentry, construction of musical instruments and handicrafts. They are dense and very resistant species. They offer some of the most interesting colors in the world of wood.
Teak. Teak is also a high quality option. It is resistant, but mainly anti-rot, which is why it is used in the most adverse situations. Outdoors and even boat building. Golden tones predominate.
Sandalwood. It is a dense wood with a fine texture, brown in color that darkens with time. It is used not only in carpentry, due to its fragrances it is also used as an air freshener and in obtaining oils.
Palo Morado, Amaranth or Mexican Peltogyne. What is most striking about this American wood is its color. It has shades that go from violet to purple, something really remarkable in the world of wood.
Sycamore. With whitish sapwood and brown heartwood, this wood stands out for its density and durability. So much so that the pharaohs wanted their sarcophagi to be built with this wood. It is also very easy to work with.
Zebrano. It is a wood widely used in joinery since its color offers an interesting contrast. Its whitish sapwood stands out in the dark stripes that run through the wood and make it look like the stripes of a zebra.
This is just a short list of some of the best woods in the world, but certainly not all. There are several thousand species, and many of them can be considered noble. If you think we should include anything else, enjoy and leave a comment.
Invest in hardwoods
This is a frequently asked question, along with what are hardwoods. This interest is aroused by the prices that some of these woods acquire.
There are several ways to obtain income from this wood, or better, to obtain them:
- Illegal registration. Unfortunately, there are madmen who are even willing to kill species for their own benefit. From here, my deepest rejection.
- Plantations These are very long-term investments, which in many cases our children or their children will enjoy. For other species, such as oak or walnut, it is not necessary to wait that long and they are not at risk.
- Recover wood. There are great treasures in houses that are already uninhabited or under renovation.
From my point of view, the future of wood as an economic activity is far from some of these species.