Holly wood

bobraymondOctober 17, 2011

I have 3 very large hollys, which are now effectively trees and I unfortunately am going to have to take them out. They are too close to the house and are starting to cause some damage. The trunks are about 18" in diameter and they are about 40' tall. Does anyone know of a practical use for this wood or who might be interested in it. I've heard of teak and holly soles for sail boats but not sure how to persue that.

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You're right about teak and holly soles. The holly for soles is mostly because of the contrast with the teak. Holly lumber is pretty expensive, I've seen it for over $25/BF. You need to find a forestry professional to give you some guidance on harvesting and sale. If there is a hardwood mill around you might check with them. Some local woodworkers may have an interest in such a small amount. If they are pretty straight, they might be good for veneers and thin planks. These are the ones used in boats mostly. It can be difficult to harvest because it can "turn", or darken, quickly. Let the buyers do it if possible.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2011 at 5:24PM
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I am in touch with a local woodturner who enjoys working with different species, so whenever I am taking out something unusual that is a reasonable size, I touch base with him. Obviously that's for small amounts, and you should find someone (a) in your area and (b) who wants larger amounts (wow... that amount sounds large to me!), but one transferrable lesson is something that RRMI alludes to: the buyer/taker will have strong preferences as to how the wood is harvested and dried.

So I don't cut until I've heard back from the woodturner whether he wants it and if so, when he can come and get it. The stuff he has made with holly show beautiful light - almost white, dense, even-grained (or ungrained) wood.

I think most arborists (larger tree services especially) would have avenues into the lumber market including for specialty wood - they factor that into the price of removal and remove the tree differently if it is worth something as lumber. So you could start your enquiries with your tree removal company. Or, is there a specialty lumber retailer near you? You could ask for a contact to their supplier. I wouldn't make any assumptions about end use since you may miss potential users by focussing too narrowly.

Karin L

    Bookmark   October 18, 2011 at 12:15AM
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Woodworkers use holly a lot. It is almost dead white. Turners like it and craftsfolks who do intarsia love it.

You'd probably do best finding a sawyer or mill to buy the wood. The problem there is that many sawmills will not use 'urban' trees due to the high percentage of foreign objects found in side the trees which damage saw blades and planer blades.

But, holly may be enough of a draw to get someone to buy them.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2011 at 12:30AM
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