Pine lumber is cut from evergreen trees, many kinds of which are abundant all across the globe. Generally considered softwood, pine is the material of choice for much construction work, including furniture and craft design. This preference partially stems from the fact that pine trees tend to grow faster than hardwood trees, so the supply of pine lumber can be quickly replenished. Below are the main types of pine wood available in the United States.
1. Southern Yellow Pine
As the name implies, this lumber has a bright yellow color. This variety of pine is popular in construction projects because of its high density and strength. In fact, of all the pine woods, the Southern Yellow has the highest load bearing capacity. This strength makes it ideal for use in boats, flooring materials, and other carpentry jobs.
Increasing its appeal, Southern Yellow is also the least expensive of the pines, as it is very abundant, and available in all sorts of commercial cuts. The three most popular pines that Southern Yellow Pine can be made from are the Shortleaf, Longleaf, and the Loblolly pine varieties. In order to bring out the best in this type of lumber, you must stick to dark red or brown stains or to weathered effects when applying the finish.
2. White Pine
Native to North America, this wood is also known as Eastern White Pine, Soft Pine, and Northern White Pine. Most White Pine planks come from California, the Eastern and Northern states, or the regions surrounding the Great Lakes. This type of wood is too soft to be ideal for home or building construction. However, its color and pliability make it ideal for carpentry, handicrafts, and furniture. Many craftsmen prefer White Pine over other wood types because it is resistant to swelling, shrinking, warping, and splitting.
3. Blue Pine
The only difference between a Blue Pine and a Southern Yellow Pine is the color. The Blue Pine has a bluish, brownish or grayish stain on its grains because of the dark fungus living on it. It has a high load-bearing capacity, so you won't have any problems with this type of wood when it comes to strength. However, finding the right finish can be difficult, since some parts of the wood may retain the dark bluish color even after the staining process.
4. Deal Pine
Deal Pine planks come in red and yellow varieties, and are often imported from Europe (particularly from Poland, Sweden, Norway) and Northern Asia (especially Russia).
The distinguishing quality of Deal Pine is the knotty, pronounced grain, which makes the wood a beautiful choice for use in paneling and wooden doors. This wood type is also a popular choice in furniture and home interior structures. In the US, some White Pine planks are washed with ammonia and sanded to appear yellow and have the knotty patterns unique to Deal Pine lumber.