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Tree IDs please ... what have I been splitting?

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by Runner T, Mar 28, 2013.

  1. Runner T

    Runner T New Member

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    Loc:
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    My experience with Tree ID is not very good. I've been searching through the forums and comparing the pictures to what I see in my back yard. I still don't know what these are for sure.

    Could you all help put some of these to bed? They might be pretty easy for those with experience.

    It will help me learn more about tree ID and also help me get my stacks right. Most folks here stack oak separately from other varieties (which makes sense to me), so I want to figure out if any of this is oak.

    Thanks in advance!

    #1
    These are heavy, difficult to split and very stringy. Strong fragrance -- I've been piling the splits up and I can smell it as I walk by. Newbie guess - Elm?

    1 (Round).jpg 1 (Split).jpg


    #2

    I've been wondering if this was just a younger version of #1. Doesn't necessarily look like it, but these have some of the same characteristics.

    IMG_20130328_135509_262.jpg

    #3

    These were heavy to carry but easy to split. Faint but nice fragrance off these. Kinda spicy. Newbie guess - some kind of Oak?

    3 (Round).jpg 3 (Split).jpg

    #4

    From the red color and the fragrance, I would guess these are cherry. But the bark is confusing me -- most cherry I see on these forums has a very different bark.
    The dog tried to take the splits below -- he was going after that juice in the second pic below.

    4 (Round).jpg 4 (split).jpg

    #5

    I don't have a great picture of this next one. Initially I thought it was Ash but now I'm not so sure.


    5 (Round).jpg

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  2. CHeath

    CHeath Member

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    Ill take a stab but I'm new. But I am getting better!

    1 red oak
    2 cherry
    3 white oak.
    4 cherry
    5 oak as well
  3. tigeroak

    tigeroak Member

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    Loc:
    kansas illinois
    1-hickory
    2- maple
    3- ash
    4- red oak
    5- ash
    ScotO likes this.
  4. bigbarf48

    bigbarf48 Minister of Fire

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    Loc:
    Stone Mountain GA
    1- sweet gum
    3- red oak
    5- white oak
  5. CHeath

    CHeath Member

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    Loc:
    Northwest NorthCarolina Mtns
    LoL
  6. Jon1270

    Jon1270 Minister of Fire

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    2 looks like soft maple, but I can't be sure. I'm confident 3 is an ash, and 4 is red oak. The other two, I don't know.
  7. Jon1270

    Jon1270 Minister of Fire

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    On further inspection, is there any chance you mixed up some of the pics? The two images for #4 have very different amounts of sapwood, so they don't look like they go together.
  8. Runner T

    Runner T New Member

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    Thanks for taking the time to look at such a detailed level. At my current level of expertise I could never have spotted the difference there in #4. The images for #4 above are not from the same piece. I should have put the picture below in between the two pictures for #4. I figured they were the same type and I was curious about the stuff flowing out in that second picture.

    4 (First Split).jpg
  9. Jon1270

    Jon1270 Minister of Fire

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    Okay, I'm still going with red oak for that one. The rays are big and obvious, which really narrows the field. Definitely not cherry.
  10. shoot-straight

    shoot-straight Burning Hunk

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    Loc:
    Kennedyville, MD
    hickory
    maple
    hickory
    maple
    ash
  11. Applesister

    Applesister Minister of Fire

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    Hi Runner guy, you got some nice looking firewood. I want to go with Red elm on the first pic bevause of the interlocking grain. I know black gum has interlocking grain as well but isnt the same as sweet gum. Its not the right sapwood to heartwood ratio for Red elm. so 1- is a mystery. It could be sweet gum.
    2- guessing silver maple. or some type of maple bark.
    3- no clue but once again, nice firewood.
    4- definitely Red Oak!! Jon is right...ray flecks is an oak signature.
    5- sorry no clue....
    Are you in the suburbs? alot of trees are nursery trees. Exotic cultivars and european varieties of God knows what.
    None of these look native to me here in upstate ny.
  12. basod

    basod Minister of Fire

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    #1 is for sure hickory - save for long overnight burns or use small pieces on the grill/smoker. Atleast 2 years to season
    #2 maple
    3&5 both look like ash - there isn't enough color to be hickory
    4 looks like some red oak, deffinately see the pores in the split
  13. Jon1270

    Jon1270 Minister of Fire

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    I've only split up one red elm tree, but FWIW, its grain was nowhere near as interlocked as the white elm I've dealt with. The red elm I have split quite easily and cleanly.
  14. Applesister

    Applesister Minister of Fire

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    Yeah the splits look very much hickory but the bark looks too flaky. Hickory is stringy but very very heavy. Maybe...
    If it is...good for you!
  15. Applesister

    Applesister Minister of Fire

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    Yes Jon you are right Im splitting up 2 red elms right now. The grain is very straight on both of the trees. Wished I had sent the trees to a mill. Beautiful wood. Trees were straight enough for some good lumber. A big Oh well.
  16. Bocefus78

    Bocefus78 Minister of Fire

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    Tigeroak get the prize....Right on all 5!

    1-hickory
    2- soft maple
    3- ash
    4- red oak
    5- ash​
    ScotO likes this.
  17. Runner T

    Runner T New Member

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    Thanks for explaining the thought process -- definitely helps me learn.
    I live in a rural area, most people don't consider it suburbs. Lots of farms in and around the valleys in western NJ. I'm about 40 miles west of NY city and 30 miles from the PA border (Delaware Water Gap for those who live in these parts).
  18. nrford

    nrford Minister of Fire

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    DEFINATIVE ANSWERS
    #1 Hickory
    #2 Hard Maple
    #3 Ash
    #4 Red Oak
    #5 Hard Maple
    Shane N likes this.
  19. Runner T

    Runner T New Member

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    Thanks everyone for the information ... it will be very helpful as I begin stacking. I plan to separate the hickory and red oak from the other stuff.

    One additional question -- how can I tell the difference between the Ash and the Hard Maple #5 above? Is there something distinctive I should be looking for? #3 and #5 were very similar to me

    I've read here that Ash would season fastest so I'd like to see if I can identify the Ash specifically.
  20. Jon1270

    Jon1270 Minister of Fire

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    I imagine you're asking because of nford's "definative" answers, but I think he was kidding about the definitive part. If the split faces of #5 look like #3, then it's ash, not maple. The pic of #5 is not good enough for us to make anything but a rough guess.

    Also, I think he's wrong about #2 being hard maple.
  21. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    1 - Hickory, looks like mockernut to me.....
    2 - Sugar maple (AKA hard maple). Bark screams it.....
    3 - Ash. without a doubt
    4 - red oak, without a doubt. smells kinda vinegary, I bet....
    5 - ash, just like #3.
  22. bogydave

    bogydave Minister of Fire

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    hickory
    maple
    ash
    oak
    ash
  23. weatherguy

    weatherguy Minister of Fire

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    I agree with Scotty and Dave, I just got a truckload of mockernut and looks exactly like that, at least I was told it was hickory and sure feels like it, I put a split up against a hickory I have in the yard and it looked like a match, great firewood btw, takes a while to season well though, couple years probably.
  24. nrford

    nrford Minister of Fire

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    Why I say #5 is Hard Maple
    Note the growth rings, on Hard maple they are simply very tight with only microscopic evidence of open pores. While the photo is not of the greatest quality for 100% ID I can see no evidence of the open pores in the growth rings I associate as a feature of ash. While the bark is hard to associate to only one of the above mentioned species the end grain view has more features of Hard Maple than Ash. Therefore I say H.Maple. If I had a photo of that piece split perhaps my answer would be differant.
  25. Woody Stover

    Woody Stover Minister of Fire

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    It's gorgeous, isn't it? :cool: I've got a thing for that stuff (will be updating my Red thread very soon.) Someone (nrford?) did all his interior trim with Red Elm.

    #1 could be Pignut...
    I can't tell if #2 is Sugar or Silver Maple...haven't had a lot of chances yet to compare and contrast between the two.

    Yeah, hard to say on #5. On the split surface, as previously mentioned, Ash would be rougher (due to the pores?) and Maple would be a lot smoother. But #5 almost looks like it has the classic White Ash pinhole in the center of the round, and the way it's checking, I'm gonna say Ash.
    nrford likes this.

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