Hardwood and Softwood: What is the difference

It doesn't mean hardwood is hard, and softwood is soft. Hardwood and softwood are distinguished in terms of their reproduction. Some examples of hardwood family are Teak, Mahogany, Acacia, Eucalyptus, etc. And examples of softwood are Pine and Spruce.
Interestingly that some hardwood are soft, and it has lower density than softwood. But both hardwood and softwood can be used in construction works or decorative products.

What is Hardwood?
Hardwood comes from trees with bigger leaves which lose their leaves annually during winter season. The hardwood trees tend to grow slower, and so it makes the density higher. Because hardwood is denser, meaning it is heavier than softwood. High density gives hardwood better resistance to humidity after it reaches EMC. That makes most of hardwood are more durable under outdoor conditions.
The color of hardwood are normally darker than softwood. The grain is more beautiful because the different color bring visible fiber pattern to the timber.

What is Softwood?
Softwood comes from conifer, which usually remains evergreen with needle-shape leaves. And as it grows faster, softwood generally has lesser density. Softwood has lighter color and lower in weight. Softwood has lower resistance to humidity and the wood grain normally more straight.
Softwood are commonly used for indoor furniture, decoration and non structural use. In many cases plywood and other engineered wood are made of softwood. Softwood also can be identified by its log's shape which are more cylinder.

Generally hardwood is harder for the manufacturing process and easier for the maintenance. Its range color is wide and its density gives additional strength. Cost of hardwood is more expensive than softwood because of overall longer growth, difficulties of the processing, and might be more additional cost for finishing. 

Hardwood: Acacia, Balsa, Beech, Eucalyptus, Mahogany, Oak, Poplar, Teak, Walnut
Softwood: Cedar, Juniper, Pine, Redwood, Spruce


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