Maple Burls and roots

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Forum topic by Don Butler posted 06-18-2015 02:53 PM 836 views 0 times favorited 1 reply Add to Favorites Watch
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Don Butler

1092 posts in 3420 days

06-18-2015 02:53 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

A neighbor’s big maple trees were taken down by the power company and I was able to salvage some good sized burls and just out of curiosity I took a six foot long root about an inch and a half thick. ( Yes, yes, I know. I just posted about using metrics. I’m as stuck as many others.)
My question about these parts of the maple is this: Since I see the boards from the trunks of maples to be a fairly light color, I can’t help wondering about the other parts.
When I sliced the burls they were a distinctive reddish brown and when I cleaned up the root it was a decidedly dark reddish brown. Even the inside was dark where I removed the outer layer that was loosening and lifting off anyway.
I wonder why the burl and root of the maple is so dark and reddish compared to the fair color of the lumber from the trunk?
Curiously, the root was cracking across in places. I don’t know if that was a result of its being jerked out of the ground by an excavator or if its something the root does when it dries.

I’m wondering if any of you woodsmen out there can shed light on this issue.


-- No trees were damaged in posting this message, but thousands of electrons were seriously inconvenienced.

1 reply so far

View Kyle Nelson's profile

Kyle Nelson

52 posts in 1339 days

#1 posted 06-18-2015 06:47 PM

I’ve never seen any root wood, so this isn’t entirely from direct experience, but I’ve cut some up some freshly fallen pecan and some maple stumps recently. In both cases, the wood was much darker/reddish when fresh cut, but has lightened significantly upon drying.

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