North Trailhead: Burl on a Black Cherry

Panorama offering a look into a mixed species Pennsylvania woodlot in late February.

North trailhead panorama

The amazing thing about burls is that they don’t actually kill the tree! Not usually anyway…

Can you spot the burl on the black cherry in the attached image (left)? If not, I’ve provided a close up below.

You may also want to visit the original post dealing with this site – A Forest study: North Trailhead.

These bulging, rounded growths develop on sites that have been stressed by direct injury or invasion. Invaders include bacteria, fungi, and insects.

Tree burls are caused by injury or invasion (insect, bacteria, fungi)

Burl on Black Cherry

Although burls are unsightly on the growing trees, they are a favorite among many woodworkers. The same growth patterns that lead to the bulge on the trunk are also responsible for intricate, often beautiful, patterns in the wood grain. 

Bowl created from black cherry bowl.

Bowl created from black cherry burl

For some amazing examples of how burls can lend themselves to beautiful creations in the right hands, check out bowl-maker David Walsh’s creations. The bowl displayed here is one he created from a black cherry burl.

Your feedback is always welcome! Please feel free to comment or submit questions at the end of this post.

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