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North America


Tree Data
Black cherry is reported to be the largestof all North American cherries, attaining heights of about 100 feet (30 m) in the favorable climate of the Appalachian.

The average tree is reported to be about 80 feet (24 m) in height, and produces a tall trunk which is about 24 inches (60 cm) in diameter. Cherry trees are reported to be large enough to harvest after 35 to 40 years, with larger trees growing to full heights in about 100 years. The trees are famous for their wood, but they are also reported to be attractive, flowering species. Cherry trees are reported to be easily attacked by various organisms, including birds that eat the food and harm the bark to mites, slogs and insects such as, fruit flies. They are also susceptible to brown rot, root rot, leaf spot, and blossom blight.

Sapwood Color
The narrow sapwood is whitish to reddish brown in color. The wood has also been described as creamy pink. Heartwood Color The heartwood varies in color from reddish brown to deep red, or light reddish brown, usually with brown flecks and some gum pockets. Some flooring manufacturers are reported to steam Black cherry lumber to bleed the darker heartwood into the sapwood for a more uniform color. Color variations between boards are reported to be rather significant. Light & Air-Induced Changes Black cherry is reported to be very sensitive to UV light, and changes to its characteristic reddish-brown, mahogany shade upon exposure. The use of UV light inhibitors in coatings has been suggested to prevent the color change.

The grain is reported to be fine, but material with dark wavy streaks which are described as striking in appearance are frequently found. Quartersawn pieces are reported to be very beautiful. Cherry is reported to have a strong resemblance to true Mahogany, and is often called New England mahogany.

Texture is fine and uniform, and the wood often has narrow brown pith flecks and small gum pockets.

Luster has been described as rich and satiny.

The wood has no characteristic odor or taste.

Movement in Service
Seasoned wood is reportedf to be dimensionally stable, and retains its shape very well after manufacture.

Natural Durability

Heartwood is reported to be very resistant to decay, but the sapwood is vulnerable to attack by the furniture beetle. Natural resistance to decay is reported to be of little concern because of the typical uses of the wood. Resistance to Impregnation The heartwood is moderately resistant to preservative treatment.

Veneering Qualities
Black cherry crotches and burls are reported to be highly sought after for figured veneers.

Strength Properties
American Black cherry has been described as a wood with many moods, and is usually considered to be in the same class as mahogany for usage in the United States. It is described as wood for fine furniture, with a warm look that is reflected in many furniture styles. The stiff and strong wood is reported to work easily with both hand and machine tools. European and American black cherries are reported to be comparable in many aspects, but the latter is more plentiful. Both species are reported to be strong and tough and have been compared in strength properties to Yellow birch. Its has high bending strength in the air-dry condition (about 12 percent moisture content), and compares favorably with Teak.


Category Green Dry Unit
Bending Strength 7900 13250 psi
Crushing Strength (Perp.) 410 965 psi
Max. Crushing Strength 3435 7865 psi
Static Bending (FSPL) 3600 9900 psi
Impact Strength 38 36 inches
Stiffness 1380 1655 1000 psi
Work to Maximum Load 13 11 in-lbs/in3
Hardness 660 lbs
Shearing Strength 1700 psi
Specific Gravity 0.47 0.54
Weight 46 36 lbs/cu.ft.
Radial Shrinkage (G->OD) 4 %
Tangential Shrink. (G->OD 7 %
Volumetric Shrink. (G->OD 12 %



Crown-Wood is a division of Crown-Holdings bvba, a registered company in Belgium active in the import/export & trading of all kinds of Tropical & Exotic Hardwoods (from South-East Asia, West Africa and South-America). 

Crown-Holdings bvba

Crown-Holdings bvba has the following divisions:

Contact details

a division of Crown-Holdings bvba

Baillet Latourlei 98
2930 Brasschaat

E-mail: info@crown-wood.be
Telephone: +32 3 480 10 14
Fax: +32 3 605 48 53