Botanical Name: Fraxinus nigra Often known as swamp or water ash, black ash grows mainly in the wetlands of eastern North America. As the softest American ash, it is more likely to be found in interior joinery and cabinetwork than in sports equip­ment, where white ash is commonly used. It also has a significant history as a weaving wood for many types of baskets. Black ash’s rotary cut and sliced veneers are highly decorative and much sought after.

Other Names: Brown ash, hoop ash, swamp ash, water ash, northern brown ash.

Sources: U. S.A. and Canada.

Characteristics: Straight grain; coarse, even texture; dark, grayish brown.

Uses: Joinery, cabinetwork, plywood and veneers. Workability: Generally good; blunts cutters moderately; excellent bending properties.

Finishing: Accepts finishes well.

Weight: 35 Ib./cu. ft.

Price: Inexpensive.



Botanical Name: Fraxinus americana White ash can be considered the all-American leisure wood. Strong and very shock-resistant, it is used to make oars, pool cues and baseball bats. It is also the wood of choice for garden-tool handles, used extensively in boat building and cut into decorative veneers. It often has a highly variegated heartwood, known as olive ash or calico ash.

Other Names: American white ash, Canadian ash, American ash.

Sources: Canada and U. S.A.

Characteristics: Straight grain; coarse texture; light - brown heartwood with almost white sapwood.

Uses: Baseball bats, pool cues, oars, tool handles, boat building, furniture and veneers.

Workability: Satisfactory; moderate blunting of cut­ters; excellent bending properties; pre-bore for nailing. Weight: 42 Ib./cu. ft.

Price: Inexpensive.


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