Species Overview

All our timber is sourced as locally as possible - this is something we have done from the beginning. We believe that Scottish hardwood has a character and quality that can’t be found in imported timber. We buy our round wood logs from FSC Certified suppliers and local landowners who manage their woodlands in a sustainable way. We have a chain of custody for each log that tracks its provenance from Tree to Table. The samples below are an indication of the beauty inherent in our local timber. Each log we process is unique therefore its characteristics may be different form the samples shown below.


Common Yew or European Yew

(Taxus baccata) Family: Taxaceae

The grain from this distinctive species can be straight, curly and irregular often with live and dead knots. The heartwood is golden orange-brown with streaks of purple or dark brown veins. The sapwood is a cream white colour and gives an attractive contrast to the heartwood. Clusters of pin knots are often present further adding to the visual appeal of this species.

Birch Wood
Elm Woodmailto:info@realwoodstudios.com?subject=Website%20EnquiryQuarter Sawn Oak
Real Wood Studios  Monteviot Nurseries, Ancrum, 
Nr Jedburgh, 
Scottish Borders 
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Timber Sales
❯❯ Species Overview 
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European or Common Ash

(Fraxinus excelsior) Family: Oleaceae
A popular wood with a pronounced, coarse grain pattern which is generally straight grained. The sapwood is creamy white to pale tan in colour - sometimes with a pinkish hue, with the heartwood being light to mid brown. Olive Ash is the term used to describe the wood when there is alot of darker heartwood present. Other unusual characteristics include Rippled and Marbled Ash which happen when the grain grows in wild patterns.


European Beech or Common Beech

(Fagus sylvatica) Family: Fagaceae

A straight grained wood with a fine and even texture. The heartwood is a pale cream to pink/brown in colour often with darker coloured veining. Flamed Beech describes when this colouration is pronounced. Spalted Beech is the result of a fungus growing on the log before conversion and leads to an attractive pattern of black veining and irregular colour patterns.


Silver Birch

(Betula pendula) Family: Betulaceae

A generally straight grained and uniform wood with a fine texture. The heartwood is creamy white to light tan in colour often with a slight pink or golden hue. Darker flecks are often present which can be pronounced. Unusual characteristics include Pippy and Marbled grain patterns.


English, Dutch and Wych Elm

(Ulmus procera, hollandica and glabra) Family: Ulmaceae

A popular wood with a coarse texture and irregular grain pattern. Wych Elm tends to be straighter grained often with a distinctive green streak. English and Dutch Elm generally grow more irregularly and have more complex grain patterns as a result - often including pockets of ingrown bark. The heartwood is mid to dark brown in colour but can also have a strong red tone. Due to Dutch Elm Disease much of our elm is from standing deadwood - trees that have been killed by the disease. The colouration is often more varied in this sort of timber and can include lighter tan and golden colours. Burr and Pippy Elm describe the pin knots and larger burrs in the wood. This can vary from light 'cats paws' to dense areas of heavy burr.


Native/ British or European Oak

i. Sessile or Durmast Oak ii. Pedunculate Oak

(i. Quercus sessiliflora or petraea  ii. Quercus robur/pendunculata) Family: Fagaceae

A traditional favourite with a generally straight grained appearance although the grain can also be irregular and cross grained. Light tan to medium brown in colour oak tends to have a uniform colouration. Quarter saw oak displays attractive silvery figuration on the surface from the medullary rays. Pippy and Burr oak are fairly common characteristics of Scottish oak and like Elm this can vary from light to heavy coverage. Wood that includes knots and splits is often referred to as Rustic Oak. Brown and Tiger oak refer to wood that has been attacked by 'Beef Steak Fungus' which causes the wood to turn a darker brown.


Sycamore Plane, Great Maple, Plane

(Acer pseudoplatanus) Family: Aceraceae

A straight grained and uniform wood with a natural lustre. Creamy white to light tan in colour often with a degree of Marbling of Flaming similar to Beech. Quarter sawn boards have an attractive lacey figure. Unusual characteristics include Rippled and Pippy Sycamore and on occasion light spalting.

To see more examples of our native hardwoods click on the slideshow below.