Hackberry (Celtis occidentalis)

Hackberry

Family: Elm (Ulmaceae)

Common Names: Common Hackberry, Northern Hackberry, American Hackberry, Mississippi Hackberry, Sugarberry, Sugar Hackberry, Nettletree, Beaverwood.

The Hackberry easily grows to 130 feet tall by 60 feet wide when found growing in the open, often with a single trunk that quickly branches into several spreading huge branches that form an ascending or spreading canopy.

Hackberry is a member of the elm family and is closely related to Sugarberry (Celtis laevigata). The two woods are virtually identical and frequently marketed together as "hackberry". There is little difference between sapwood and heartwood. Both are yellowish grey to light brown with yellow streaks. The wood has irregular grain: sometimes straight and sometimes interlocked, with a fine uniform texture. Heavy but soft, the wood is of limited commercial importance.

Hackberry Historically, most Southern church pews were made of hackberry. Good grades of hackberry wood are used for furniture, millwork, some athletic equipment, kitchen cabinets,doors and mouldings. Poor grades are used for crates, boxes and barrel staves.

The soft, close-grain wood mills smoothly and machines easily. The wood planes and turns well and has a moderate ability to hold nails and screws. Hackberry dries readily with minimal degrade. It has a fairly high shrinkage and is most Click to Enlarge Image

Hackberry and walnut ring box
Hackberry and walnut ring box.
suitable in small, short pieces of cut stock. Stains satisfactorily. Through careful staining, the wood can be made to mimic the appearance of more expensive cabinet woods.