White Ash (Fraxinus americana) is a tree that is native to eastern United States and Canada. The White Ash tree is a fast-growing hard wood species. It’s the speed of this growth that creates substantial sapwood. White Ash sapwood is beige to light brown, with a straight, open grain. When stained, ash has a close resemblance to Oak, minus Oak’s telltale rays, making this a popular choice for woodworkers making furniture or cabinets.
Black Ash (Fraxinus nigra) is also native to the eastern United States and Canada. Black Ash veneer is slightly darker in color than white ash. It is often marketed as Brown Ash. Preferring a colder climate these trees grow further north than the White Ash.
European Ash (Fraxinus excelsior) grows throughout mainland Europe and Southwest Asia. It too, has a heartwood that is light brown in color, while the sapwood is wide and beige to light brown. European Ash is lighter than American White Ash.
Tamo, Japanese Ash (Fraxinus mandschurica) is a beautiful, highly figured wood that grows primarily in Japan, Korea, Russia, and China. Tamo Ash has a curling grain. When rotary cut, Tamo showcases a “peanut” effect that is close to a quilted Maple.
Olive Ash (Fraxinus genus) is not a separate species but is the heartwood of the European Ash tree. Showcasing the dark and light wood colors, it provides a two-tone look.
All Ash trees are close members of the Olive tree family. It is a durable wood, both lightweight and flexible. Ash wood stains well. Ash is popular in mid-century style furniture and design. Ash trees are subject to the Emerald Ash Borer, a destructive beetle that destroys the wood by tunneling. Black Ash is the preferred species for the Emerald Ash Borer. While efforts are underway to stop the destruction of these trees, Ash wood may still be hard to find at this time.
Ash Veneer is available in a variety of cuts including flat cut, rotary cut, and quarter cut. Multiple sizes are available including 4’x8’, 4’x10’, and 4’x12’, as well as larger sizes of 5’x8’, 5’x10’, and 5’x12’, and cross grain sizes of 8’x4’ and 10’x4’.