What is hardwood timber?

Hardwood timber is timber sourced from a hardwood tree. These are usually characterized as slow growing, broad-leaved, deciduous trees. They are found in Europe, America, and Africa. The main varieties are ash, beech, birch, cherry, elm, walnut, iroko, mahogany, oak, and teak.

People often favor hardwood timber as it is longer lasting, weathers better and is typically stronger than softwood timber. Hardwood timber is also popular as it requires less maintenance and is easy to clean in comparison to some softwood varieties.

Today in the UK hardwoods are increasingly popular in the construction, joinery, furniture, flooring and DIY industries. Its popularity is due to its high-quality appearance and its ability to add character to homes when used in construction or joinery. This is most well demonstrated when you look at hardwood cladding or oak framed buildings.

Hardwood is often seen as a more sustainable material to use as when a forest is managed well. Using hardwood for construction or in a home for a floor can actually become carbon positive. This is due to the way in which hardwood forests, especially in Europe and North America are managed. A hardwood floor, for example, can last for 500+ years, enough time to grow numerous new hardwood trees to full size. If then, the forest is well managed, by the time a new floor is needed the materials will have regenerated.

Always look for well-managed timber that has the PEFC™ or FSC® symbol when purchasing your hardwood timber. This is to support sustainable forestry around the world.