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What Wood Is That?

What Wood Is That?

What Wood Is That?

If you can't tell the difference between a board of white ash and one of red oak, here's some help for common North American hardwoods.

Field identification guides for living trees offer plenty of tips for telling one species from another. Leaves, bark, overall shape, twigs, and other characteristics give you all the clues needed.

For wood of questionable identity, though, you must rely on a different set of clues. Wood technologists call them "keys." The following basic ones help you identify unfamiliar native hardwoods that you might come across.

Continued on page 2:  First, check wood's color


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