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Eucalyptus tree appearance wood uses and lumber

Eucalyptus tree is a general name for a lot of individual tree species. In total there are over 400 tree species labelled as eucalyptus and all part of the mytaceae family. Most of these trees are native to south East Asia and Australia. Eucalyptus trees are also planted in many parts of the world for their beauty, excellent firewood and wind break capabilities. The eucalyptus tree is fast growing, has a very distinctive and attractive looking bark and most trees are evergreen.

Eucalyptus trees, leaves and fruits description

The tallest eucalyptus trees can grow to heights up to 230 feet or 80 meters. The majority of the trees are classed as evergreen but some species are semi-evergreen. Leaves of eucalyptus trees in general are long, alternate arranged, thick and leathery and sickle shaped. Leaves of big trees like the blue gum tree can reach lengths up to 12 inches or 30 cm and vary in color from light to dark grey green. Fruits of many eucalyptus trees are woody seed capsules with an opening on one side.

Eucalyptus tree bark and trunk

Bark is a real trademark of the eucalyptus tree. Yong trees still have smooth bark but this will change in time. When the tree gets older the bark darkens and forms long peeling ribbons that hang from the trunk and branches. This look is typical for most eucalyptus trees and a real trademark of the species. Trunks of eucalyptus trees vary in length. Tall species like the karri tree have very long trunks. Old karri trees can have trunks with a diameter over 10 feet or 3 meters.

Eucalyptus wood properties and durability

The heartwood and sapwood of eucalyptus trees often has a different color. Exposure to sunlight will darken both wood types and usually the sapwood will be more in line with the heartwood. Most eucalyptus wood has a medium to coarse texture, heavy, moderate to high strength and good shock resistance properties. The average dried weight of eucalyptus wood varies depending on the species. Trees like the jarrah have moderate heavy wood classed as II high moderate durability.

Eucalyptus wood working tips and uses

Most eucalyptus wood and lumber nails, screws, glues, and works well both by hand or machine. Pre drilling is advised when screws or nails are used. It is recommended to let the wood acclimatize to the environment to minimize the chance of cracks and bending. Some Eucalyptus woods when dried can be pretty hard to work by hand. Therefore always make sure to use sharp tools to tackle this problem. Eucalyptus wood is used in a wide range of products like veneer, plywood, flooring, construction, boat building, fence posts, turned articles and not to forget as firewood!

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