Check out the Hardwood Floors magazine Resource Book with more than 3,400 listings of manufacturers, distributors, and other NWFA members.
View Digital Edition
Back to Species Gallery
Species - Domestic
Top portion is finished with water-base finish; bottom with oil-based finish
Color: In yellow birch (B. alleghaniensis), sapwood is creamy yellow pale while; heartwood is light reddish brown tinged with red. In sweet birch (B. lenta), sapwood is light colored and heartwood is dark brown tinged with red.
Grain: Medium figuring, straight, closed grain, even texture. Occasional curly grain or wavy figure in some boards.
Variations: Within Species And Grades: Yellow birch, sweet birch, paper birch. Paper birch (B. papyrifera) is softer and lower in weight and strength than yellow or sweet birch. However, yellow birch is most commonly used for flooring. Boards can vary greatly in grain and color.
Sawing/Machining: Difficult to work with hand tools, but good machining qualities.
Sanding: Sands satisfactorily if correct sanding sequence is followed.
Nailing: No known problems.
Finishing: May be difficult to stain. Comments: Origin: North America
Hardness/Janka: Janka:1260 (yellow); 2% softer than Northern red oak.
Dimensional Stability: Average (Yellow: 9.5; 10% less stabel than Northern red oak).