Norse mythology refers to ash as "the mighty tree that supports the heavens" and "below earth its roots went down to hell." Ash belongs to the olive family, although its only fruit is a dart-like winged seed. Ash is a popular species for food containers because the wood has no taste. Admiral Richard Byrd wore snowshoes made from ash during his polar expeditions and early windmills were made from this species.
Where it Grows
Throughout the Eastern U.S. White ash trees range in height from 80 to 120 feet with diameter from 2 to 5 feet.
The sapwood is light-colored to nearly white and the heartwood varies from greyish or light brown, to pale yellow streaked with brown. The wood is generally straight-grained with a coarse uniform texture. The degree and availability of light-colored sapwood, and other properties, will vary according to the growing regions.
Furniture, flooring, doors, architectural millwork and moulding, kitchen cabinets, paneling, tool handles, baseball bats, hockey sticks, billiard cues, skis, oars and turnings.
Ash machines well, is good in nailing, screwing and gluing, and can be stained to a very good finish. It dries fairly easily with minimal degrade, and there is little movement in performance.
Ash has very good overall strength properties relative to its weight. It has excellent shock resistance and is good for steam bending.