News Focused on the Wood Market

Cocobolo lauded for looks but shorter supplies noted

Thursday, 08 January 2009 00:00

Cocobolo is a true rosewood and one of the world’s most attractive exotic woods, exhibiting a wide range of rich colors including shades of orange, yellow, red and brown, accompanied by black striping. Cocobolo (Dalbergia retusa) grows mainly in the Pacific regions of Mexico and Central America to heights up to 60' with trunk diameters as large as 2' to 3'. As is the case with many exotic woods, cocobolo supplies are diminishing because of excessive logging.



Unique mahogany alternative hits U.S.

Wednesday, 03 December 2008 14:51

Since supplies of genuine mahogany have been dramatically reduced in recent years, wood dealers have been pushing alternatives such as African mahogany, sapele, sipo and Spanish cedar. Now there’s a new species on the block being pushed by several U.S. distributors — Eucalyptus grandis. Lewis Lumber Products of Picture Rocks, Pa.; Northland Forest Products of Kingston, N.H.; and Thompson Mahogany of Philadelphia are involved in a joint venture with Cofusa and Urofor, two Uruguayan forestry companies, to provide this new mahogany alternative.



Cherry sales still steady in down market

Wednesday, 03 December 2008 14:45

Cherry has remained at the top of the domestic wood markets for several years now, both in demand and in price. And although domestic wood markets are about as depressed as the economy, cherry continues to be the wood of choice for many cabinetmakers and custom furniture makers. Dealers contacted by Woodshop News note that some mills are sorting cherry by color much more than they used to, and in some areas of the country, demand has decreased.



Swiss pear is a rarity among exotics

Tuesday, 04 November 2008 16:43

Swiss pear, also known as European pear, is an exotic wood primarily used in architectural millwork when it has no figure and for furniture when it exhibits a mottled or pommele figure. Supplies of European pearwood are available from a limited number of U.S. exotic wood dealers in two species, the pear trees that grow in orchards (Pyrus communis) and the trees that are found in the wild (Pyrus sorbus).



Slowly, ash is making a slight comeback

Wednesday, 05 November 2008 00:00

It’s not earth-shattering news, but for the first time in years wood dealers are talking about increased sales of ash, the wood specie that gets no respect. Sales and inquiries are up in the domestic and export markets. Although the wood is suitable for cabinets, furniture and flooring, ash sales have lagged behind oak for years despite its attractive price. So what’s behind the new interest?



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