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Guide to Hardwood Flooring Species

Wood Flooring by Species

Wood flooring doesn’t have to be boring! Choose a color and style to fit your home’s personality!

When looking into wood flooring for your home, your options are only as limited as your imagination, budget, and designing skills. Many different woods will give your home a unique look but are not as durable as others. So, what kind of wood would you choose for your home? Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of each species of wood!


Pine wood is one of the most inexpensive woods sold on the market today. There are two types of pine wood: Southern Yellow Pine and Heart Pine. Most southern yellow pine wood comes in white or yellow tones with brown knots for a rustic look. Over time this wood will become darker with a patina and it does resist shrinking and swelling, unlike other woods. Heart pine comes in a warm reddish brown tone with pale yellow sapwood staining. Many heart pine floors are reclaimed and recycled from old buildings. It can last a very long time if they are maintained. One of the drawbacks to pine woods is the softness. They are classified as softwood and can be prone to scratches and dents.


Cherry wood is known for being durable. This wood has a straight, fine grain to it and the color ranges from reddish brown to blond. This wood typically comes from two different sources: American Black Cherry trees and Brazilian (or Jatoba) Cherry trees. The American cherry is a light to medium reddish-brown tone with a tight, often wavy grain. It is a softer hardwood but has good dimensional stability. Brazilian cherry is one of the hardest woods on the market and can be found in a range of colors, specifically a reddish wood with dark streaks. This wood can be expensive if it is imported but it will give your home a beautiful color.


Maple woods have a creamy white appearance that has been known to have a slightly reddish tinge. It is one of the hardest woods and is often chosen for floors, dressers, and cabinets. Maple flooring is affordable and ultra-durable. When combined with a distinctive grain pattern, this wood is a great flooring choice. One of the drawbacks to maple is staining. This wood holds stain extremely well, which allows it to mimic darker woods like cherry and mahogany. But if it is not sealed before stains are applied, the stain will become blotchy.


Oak woods are extremely grainy and come in a variety of colors thanks to its two different variations. Red oak is light in color with a reddish tone with dark grains while white oak is a pale brown color with grain that mimics tiger stripes and yellow flecks. It is very durable and resists warping. It has a distinctive look and clear finishes highlight the grains nicely. Oak flooring is moderately priced and great in a variety of households.


Walnut woods are known for being straight-grained hardwoods that range in color from chocolate brown to yellow. There are two different variations to this wood: American Black Walnut and Brazilian Walnut. American black walnut is a rich brown to black color with a purple cast. American walnut is typically softer than the average wood while Brazilian walnut is typically one of the hardest woods. Brazilian walnut is a medium to very dark brown-black color with very little variation in the wood. These woods are typically strong with beautiful colors. Many boards of this wood can vary in color from one end of the plank to the other. It is also one of the more expensive woods but is a durable and stable flooring.


Choosing flooring for your home could be a hard decision. But choosing one of these beautiful hardwoods will accent your home perfectly! For more information on installing hardwood flooring into your Baltimore home, contact John K. Eareckson & Co. today!

John K. Eareckson & Co.: Baltimore Custom Hardwood Flooring

At John K. Eareckson & Co., we pride ourselves on providing the best quality and craftsmanship in the Baltimore-Washington area, from custom hardwood installation and repairs to refinishing. So if you are interested in a new look to your hardwood flooring, pick up the phone and give us a call today!

If you have any questions about New Hardwood Floors, please contact John K. Eareckson & Co. by calling 410-788-4200 or visit today for a free quote regarding any of your hardwood flooring needs.

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