Hardwoods are produced by broad leaved trees whose seeds are enclosed in fruit e.g. acorns. They have a variety of grains and a multitude of colours.
These are trees that keep their leaves all the year round. They generally grow quicker than deciduous trees and grow to a larger size. They are usually softer and easier to work than deciduous trees. There are only two European evergreens and these are holly and the laurel. Most evergreens are found in tropical or sub-tropical countries such as South America, central America, Africa, Burma, India and East and West Indies. Examples of Evergreen Hardwoods are:-
Mahogany, Teak, African Walnut, Iroko, Afrormosia, Ebony and Balsa.
These are the trees that lose their leaves in winter. They generally grow in temperate climates including the British Isles, Europe, Japan, New Zealand, Chile, and central U.S.A. Examples of Deciduous Hardwoods are:-
Oak, Ash, Elm, Beech, Birch, Walnut, Sycamore, Chestnut and Lime.
These are produced by the cone bearing trees (conifers). They are generally evergreen and have easily recognizable needle-like leaves. They grow in cold or cool temperate climates. These are countries such as Canada, Scandinavia and Northern Russia.
They grow much quicker than hardwoods and are cheaper, softer and easier to work. Their seeds are held in cones. common examples are:
Pine, Fir, Spruce, Larch, Cedar and the Giant Redwood.
|The terms softwoods and hardwoods are used to describe the leaves, seeds and structure of the trees. It is not used to describe the type of wood produced e.g. Balsa is light and very soft to use. It is used to make light weight models. It is however a hardwood. Yew is a coniferous tree but is heavy and hard to use like some hardwoods.
|Examine the Common Hardwoods and softwoods Table.
The table displays a variety of common woods. It explains where and why each wood is used. It also explains the properties of woods and provides information on the advantages and disadvantages of using each one.
Using the above table answer the questions below.