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HICKORY and PECAN
Carya spp.



Common Names

Also known as Pecan Nut, Pecan Hickory, Sweet Pecan, Nogal Morado, and Pecanier.


History

Westward trekking pioneers made hickory a prerequisite for their wagon wheels. Later, the Wright Brothers whittled hickory for their "flying contraption." Hickory sawdust and chips are used to flavor meat by smoking. Commercially, the pecan is the most important native North American nut tree. Pecan was a Native American name given to any nut hard enough to require cracking with a stone. Native Americans, particularly in the Northeast, used hickory for their bows. Hickory Pecan is the state tree of Texas.


Did You Know?

Andrew Jackson, seventh president of the U.S., was nicknamed “Old Hickory” because of his toughness during disputes.


Distribution

Eastern U.S., principal commercial areas: Central and Southern states. Tree height ranges from 60 to 120 feet. Hickories grow slowly and it is not unusual for a tree to take 200 years to mature.


Main Uses

Furniture, doors, flooring, millwork, paneling, brush handles, woodenware, bending stock, toys and turnings. It is particularly suitable for food and liquid containers since there is no odor or taste.


Relative Abundance

2.2 percent of total U.S. hardwoods commercially available.


General Description

The hickories are an important group within the Eastern hardwood forests. Botanically they are split into two groups; the true hickories, and the pecan hickories (fruit bearing). The wood is virtually the same for both and is usually sold together. Hickory is the hardest, heaviest and strongest American wood. The sapwood of hickory is white, tinged with inconspicuous fine brown lines while the heartwood is pale to reddish brown. Both are coarse-textured and the grain is fine, usually straight but can be wavy or irregular.


Availability

Readily available, more limited if sold selected for color as either red or white hickory.

 

 

Ash • Beech • Brazilian Cherry • Brazilian Walnut • Aromatic Cedar • Cherry • Coffeenut • Cypress • Hickory • Hard Maple • Poplar • Red Elm • Red Oak • Sassafras • Soft Maple • Walnut • White Oak • White Pine • Yellow Pine • Heart Pine

click the above images to view

Wood is a natural product. Some variation in color and grain pattern will occur between samples, images on this website, photographs and any specific installation.



Working Properties

The heaviest of American hardwoods, the hickories can be difficult to machine and glue, and are very hard to work with hand tools, so care is needed. They hold nails and screws well, but there is a tendency to split so pre-boring is advised. The wood can be sanded to a good finish. The grain pattern welcomes a full range of medium-to-dark finishes and bleaching treatments. It can be difficult to dry and has high shrinkage.

Hickory Pecan - Working Properties Chart

PDF file on strength & mechanical properties

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Physical Properties

The density and strength of the hickories will vary according to the rate of growth, with the true hickories generally showing higher values than the pecan hickories. The wood is well-known for its very good strength and shock resistance and it also has excellent steam-bending properties. Extremely tough and resilient, even texture, quite hard and only moderately heavy.


1820 Janka Hardness Rating


Hickory Pecan Est.

Product Weights

Lbs

Green Rough Sawn

5.33

KD Rough Sawn

4.14

KD 15/16" HoM Planed

3.88

KD 3/4" S4S & Flooring

3.37

Listed weights are considered estimated averages only and do not include the additional weight of bolsters, packaging or crating.

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