Wood Identification for Students: Recognizing Different Types

There are many ways to be closer to nature but still manage to be pest free. For example, being more educated on woodwork and different types of wood can be one of the ways. People may assume that purchasing wood item production hurts the environment.

However, it couldn’t be further from the truth. In reality, wood items, such as jewelry, furniture, kitchenware, etc., will last you much longer than products made from unsustainable materials. They don’t end up in the landfill for several years. Instead, they become valuable pieces of home decor and even family heirlooms. Though, people should learn more about wood to deal with it.

Whether they are a student at us mba colleges or any other college, students for instance can take woodworking courses to learn how to recognize and identify different types of wood. After all, each type has special characteristics, uses, and properties worth knowing about. 

Besides, wood identification can also become an interesting and rewarding experience for students. Learning to recognize different types of wood can be helpful in living a more eco-friendly lifestyle and in many professional fields, like design or carpentry. So let’s see some common tips on identifying different types of wood and their characteristics.

wood cut

Look at the Color

Wood color can provide a quick and easy clue to the type of wood you are working with. Some woods, like cherry and mahogany, have distinctive reddish-brown shades, while maple and birch are often lighter in color. Of course, these are the easiest examples of color identification. 

With time, students can see more nuances and characteristics of color, like wood’s age. Overall, a variety of factors can impact the wood color, from age to the conditions in which it was grown and processed.

Some woods may also be stained or treated to achieve a certain color and that polished, finished look.

Examine the Grain Pattern

If the wood is unfinished, students can observe its grain patterns. First, it is the main way to identify real wood over man-made replicas. The grain patterns are always unique since they develop over a tree’s lifetime and are also called growth rings. Such patterns can only be true on real, unfinished wood. 

Secondly, the grain pattern will say a lot about the type of wood and how it was cut. The patterns can range from straight and uniform to irregular and curly. The grains also help identify the wood texture, which can be smooth or porous. All factors combined can speak of the wood's strength, durability, and overall appearance. 

Lastly, look for knots and other irregularities in the wood while examining grain patterns. These are usually the areas where trees have branches. Sometimes, such unique characteristics can also help identify the tree. Thus, softwood is more likely to have knots. They may also add to the wood’s overall appearance, strength, and uniqueness. In fact, such little nuances as knots can add a lot of character to the wood.

It is worth mentioning that some woods, like oak or maple, have very distinctive grain patterns, making them easy to recognize. Others can’t be identified by grain patterns alone. 

Analyze Hardness and Weight

The weight and hardness of wood can tell a lot about its origin. Obviously, you can easily detect whether it is softwood or hardwood. However, it gets a bit more complex from here on. For instance, storage conditions such as high humidity or the wood's freshness will impact its weight and density. Such wood will have higher moisture content, appearing heavier than it normally would. 

Also, students should learn to determine the hardness of the wood by simply using their fingernails and picking at the edge of the wood. It is not the hardest of woods if a fingernail can leave a dent or move relatively easily. Examples of softer woods include redwood, cedars, and pines. Hardwoods are oak, mahogany, and walnut.


Knowing the differences in such parameters is crucial when selecting wood for specific projects, as it can affect the ease of working with the wood and its overall durability.

Smell the Wood

In certain cases, students can also use their smell sense to identify the wood. Of course, it will only work for unfinished or even freshly cut wood. Plus, not all wood will keep a strong aroma after long storage. Still, some types of wood have distinct aromas that can be useful in identifying them. 

For example, cedar has a strong, pleasant aroma, while walnut has a more earthy smell. In addition, the wood smell may change over time or due to processing. Students should learn how various wood types react to these conditions when applying a smell factor in their identification process. 

Look for Unique Features

Lastly, some types of wood have unique features that can help in identification. For example, teak is known for its distinctive golden color and resistance to decay, while ebony is known for its dark, almost black color and extreme density. Students can quickly learn these unique features and more about the large variety of wood by using special wood identification guides or researching online. 

Thus, you can look at https://writepaperfor.me/pay-for-essays for further assistance in wood identification. Professional academic writers can create a report paper mentioning the unique features and characteristics of wood in your region. 

Author - Nurlana Alasgarli
Nurlana Alasgarli           

Content Specialist

Nurlana Alasgarli is a professional copywriter with more than 6 years of creative writing experience. Having lived and experienced all over the world, there are many writing genres that Nurlana follows, including nature, arts and crafts and the outdoors. Nurlana brings life to content creation, captivating her readers.


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