Brazillian cherry is nearly twice as hard as red oak. And red oak is about 50% harder than pine.
The most popular species for flooring are oak, maple, and cherry. Though mahogany, beech, ash, merbau, cypress, birch, pine, and walnut are also common.
As you choose a species, consider the wood's hardness and durability, as well as its grain and color.
Oak is the most popular species for both prefinished and unfinished hardwood flooring. White oak has a straight grain with medium to coarse texture and longer rays than red oak, which creates more patterns or figure. White oak can easily be stained to a wide variety of colors.
Red oak has generally the same appearance as white oak. In red oak, a lot of visible grain gives it a distinctively warm and rich appearance. Red oak also stains very well, but it is more popular than white oak.
Maple has a contemporary look. Its fine grain is very condensed, giving maple less texture than oak. Generally, maple has a uniform straight grain. Because the species is very hard, it resists abrasion and wear. That's why it's perfect for bowling alleys and basketball courts.
American cherry has a rich reddish color with fine graining and a satin smooth texture. American cherry is pinkish when first milled and naturally darkens to a deep red color when fully aged. This color change takes just a few weeks in direct sunlight, or 6 to 8 months in non-direct sunlight. American cherry is about 75 percent as hard as oak.
Brazilian cherry, also known as jatoba, has a naturally rich color and superior hardness. This exotic species is also photosensitive; like its American counterpart, it will darken from salmon to deep reddish brown over several months. Dark streaks give it an exotic feel, while an interlocking grain, golden glow, and toughness make Brazilian cherry a popular flooring choice. It's nearly twice as hard as red oak.
Pine creates a rustic mood. Its warm look is owed to prominent character marks - knots, marks, and stains. Because pine is much softer than other woods, it's less-than-ideal for high traffic areas.
Santos mahogany, also called cabreuva, is another popular Brazilian hardwood. It has a unique grain variation and color, ranging from a beautiful deep red to reddish brown. Popular because of its unique look and extreme durability, Santos mahogany is 70 percent harder than red oak.
Don't see a species you want?
We offer many more species than those listed here. Contact us for more options.