Wednesday 28 September 2011
Cherry wood is hard, fine-grained and used for turning, especially the large burls with unusual grains which can appear on the trunk. It is also used for making furniture, and its red-brown wood polishes up well to a deep, shiny brown colour.
1629: American cherry was first introduced to the UK in this year, and was grown as a garden ornamental tree
1912: The US hold the first National Cherry Blossom Festival commemorating the gift of trees from Japan to America as a sign
2008: The Cherry Marketing Institute discovered that rats that received a ground-up whole tart cherry powder mixed into a high-fat diet didn't gain as much weight or exhibit as many links to disease and diabetes
European Cherry is much sought after for furniture making and fine cabinetwork. It is also used for turnery, carving, gunstocks and musical instruments and of course veneers.
The leaves, twigs, and bark of black cherry contain cyanide in bound form as the cyanogenic glycoside, prunasin. During foliage wilting, cyanide is released and domestic livestock that eat wilted foliage may get sick or die. Deer eat unwilted foliage without harm
The bark has medicinal properties. In the southern Appalachians, bark is stripped from young black cherries for use in cough medicines, tonics, and sedatives. The fruit is used for making jelly and wine. Appalachian pioneers sometimes flavoured their rum or brandy with the fruit to make a drink called cherry bounce. To this, the species owes one of its names-rum cherry
Images, from top to bottom:
1. Cherry wood grain
2. A fitted kitchen made from cherry
3. A turned bowl made from a piece of cherry
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