WHITEWOOD OR TULIP TREE WOOD POPLAR OR COTTON WOOD CUCUMBER TREE WOOD AND BASSWOOD.
These unrelated trees are grouped together because they yield similar, soft, clean, fine-grained woods that are all valued for indoor work. The woods all last well when protected from the weather, but no one of them is durable when exposed.
The Whitewood or Tulip-tree (Liriodendron tulipifera) is a native of North America. The wood, which is the best of its kind, is soft, rigid, fine-grained, clean, free from knots, straight grained, capable of being nailed without splitting, and obtainable in large-sized pieces. It is used for boxes, shelves, the bottoms of drawers, and house-trim. In spite of its name, it is of a greenish-yellow color. The trees are often very large. Mat thews' mentions a specimen that was thirty-nine feet in circum ference. Whitewood trees may be known by their large tulip shaped flowers.
Poplar Trees Grow on Both Hemispheres. The tough, light woods will indent without breaking, and were formerly used for shields. The woods are now used much as whitewood is used, for trunks, boxes, woodenware, and indoor finish, but they are not as good as whitewood. The trees are sometimes called Cottonwoods because their seeds are covered with a cotton-like down. The foliage of some species, as the Aspen (Populus tremuloides), is agitated by the slightest wind. This is due to the shape of the long The Balsam Poplar or Balm of Gilead (Populus balsamifera), which thrives far into the North, must not be confused with the true Balsam or Balm of Gilead (Abies balsamea). Sudworth credits twelve species of the genus Populus to the United States.
The Cucumber-tree (Magnolia acuminata) is a member of the Magnolia family, and yields a wood that is seldom distinguished commercially from Whitewood.
Basswood Trees are Known by Many Names. Limes, Lime trees, Lind, Linden, Tiel, Tieltrees, Beetrees, Bass, and Basswood trees are the same. The woods are prized for their working qualities which resemble, but are inferior to those of white wood; and the trees are prized for their dense shade and fine appearance. The Basswood (Tilia americana) is the principal species in the United States. Basswood trees bear small, fragrant, cream colored flowers that are often surrounded by bees.