Pecan (Carya illinoensis), is the largest member of the hickory family and grows throughout the Eastern half of the United States. It is best known for its delicious nuts and is the state tree of Texas. The wood is often a favorite for those who barbecue due to its distinctive flavor. (special thanks to Paul Cox, and be sure to check out his book Texas Trees, a Friendly Guide.)
The wood from the Pecan tree is hard and brittle. It is not as strong as the wood from its brother, hickory, but Pecan lumber is still suitable for furniture and cabinets. It has the same appearance as hickory lumber with mineral staining and character marks. It is so difficult to tell the two woods apart that they can be mixed indiscriminately at the mill level (National Hardwood Lumber Association grade rule : a NHLA inspector will not make any distinction in species between Hickory and Pecan). Alamo Hardwoods buys its lumber from various parts of the country to have a better chance that the wood is actually what it is labelled as.
Hickory veneered furniture was very popular in the 1970's. It was often given a medium brown stain and flecked with dark spots to imitate the sap marks in cherry wood. This effect was called "fruitwood" finish in the marketing.
Pecan Lumber, Flat Cut
Pecan Grain With Insect Damage
#1 Fredericksburg Road at “Five Points” | P.O. Box 5398 | San Antonio, TX 78201 | T 210-736-3137 | F 210-736-3136