Out of all wood species, American Walnut gets chosen often as a favorite hardwood species to use in flooring and other furniture thanks to its durability. Sometimes known as Black American Walnut, many choose this because it gives a darker and richer color to floors compared to other commonly used woods. Nevertheless, American Walnut isn’t quite as plentiful as oak or maple, despite walnut trees growing extensively around North America.

If you’re considering using walnut for your flooring or surrounding furniture, you’re going to add considerable class to your home. Describing the color as “dark” doesn’t really do it justice until you see it in person.

The colors vary slightly, but you’ll get everything from dark tan to chocolate-brown, frequently with purple or green hues mixed in. You even have some pale yellow in there from the sapwood.

It’s worth knowing more about walnut if you’ve never used it in flooring. While it does cost a little more than other wood species, it’s still far less expensive than woods imported to America.

Here’s more info about American Walnut, including where it comes from, and its Janka hardness rating.

Origins of Walnut

Walnut trees are a major part of ancient times, especially the Greeks who considered walnuts as symbols of fertility. Ancient Greek weddings frequently took walnuts and used them for decoration, if also being worn to supposedly produce successful marriages.

However, in places like Romania, many thought walnuts related to delaying childbearing. Romanian women would wear walnuts on their wedding dresses with the hope it incited birth control.

Despite these wild extremes in what the walnut once meant, walnut trees became a substantial part of the world. These trees already existed in North America for centuries where Native Americans used them for numerous purposes before European settlers arrived.

Eventually, early Americans realized the wood from walnut trees could produce sturdy furniture, including creating musical instruments. During World War I, walnut wood became a major part of producing airplane propellers.

Notable Features About American Walnut

As a straight-grained wood, walnut is quite easy to work with for anything you want to build. You can cut and sand walnut wood very easily, which is why so many people, including floor builders, find it a favorite.

Walnut shrinks very little after drying, which helps considerably if the wood ever gets exposed to excessive water.

When you buy walnut wood, it’s frequently sold as live edge slabs, which helps give you a continual grain pattern to use in flooring or large projects like cupboards.

Plus, walnut is quite durable, despite not being the strongest wood available on the Janka hardness scale.

What is Walnut’s Janka Rating?

Black walnut gets a 1,010lbf rating on the Janka scale, which is still very sturdy. However, it’s less than what you get with varieties of oak and maple. The sturdiest wood of all on the Janka rating list is hickory, even though you’ll find some who argue this case.

Compared to other wood species like cottonwood or aspen, walnut is far superior. Any wood in the middle range on the Janka chart guarantees your floor holds up under most normal wear and tear.

Walnut, though, goes beyond flooring and into other areas around the home. You may get some ideas yourself by seeing how American Walnut gets used.

What Else to Build With American Walnut

Beyond furniture and cabinetry, many now use walnut wood to build gunstocks, interior paneling, or veneers.

Woodworkers love using walnut to build small wooden objects for practical use, including novelty items.

At GoHaus, we highly recommend American Walnut as an excellent hardwood for new flooring. Visit us to find out about our flooring expertise and our move into home products that complement your new floor.