A Guide to Different Hardwood Species

There are hundreds of different hardwood species! This wide selection can sometimes feel overwhelming, so we decided to introduce several of the most popular species of hardwood. We hope this guide helps you in differentiating as well as better understanding different hardwood species!


Different Hardwood Species:


  • Native to the United States, Birch is a popular species known for its visual similarity to Maple. It is typically pale in color with very fine graining. It should be known that while Birch is occasionally more affordable than other hardwood species, it is also slightly softer.
  • However, as with all species of hardwoods we offer, our Birch flooring is remarkably durable, eco-friendly, and can last for generations with the proper care.

Comparison of Birch Hardwood Flooring

(Left: Birch Chestnut / Middle: Birch Spice / Right: Custom Birch Flooring)

Brazilian Cherry

  • Vibrant and eye-catching, it would be hard to find another hardwood species as uniquely toned as Brazilian Cherry. Renowned for its strength, rouge and amber hues adorn the surface of this incomparable species. The natural warmth of these shades add an element of comfort and coziness within any space in which it is installed.
  • It should be noted that Brazilian Cherry is exceptionally strong with one of the highest Janka ratings documented. In fact, this incredible durability and longevity is why we offer Brazilian Cherry!

Brazilian Cherry Hardwood Flooring in Room

(Left, Right, Middle: Brazillian Cherry)

European Oak

  • European Oak is renowned for its popularity, beauty, and widespread appeal. In fact, due to its esteem, this species is available in nearly every shade. This variety is also due to its premier stain-absorbing properties. In Latin, its name is Quercus robur which directly translates to “Oak” and “Strength/Hard Timber.” This species is also known for its silkier, less linear grain pattern than that of its American namesake.

Comparison of European Oak Hardwood Flooring

(Left: European Oak Pebble Beach/ Middle: European Oak La Jolla / Right: European Oak Carmel)


  • Hickory is an especially dense, firm, and rigid hardwood. Originally used for baseball bats due to its durability, Hickory is now a popular flooring option, especially for use in high-traffic areas.

Comparison of Hickory Hardwood Flooring

(Left: Hickory Cabo Reef / Middle: Hickory Spanish Coffee  / Right: Hickory Chateau Distressed)


  • One of the hardest of any hardwood species, Maple is yet another exceptionally popular flooring option. It typically features minimal graining and a naturally smooth texture. In addition, you may want to go the prefinished hardwood route with Maple for a slightly simpler renovation. However, selecting an unfinished Maple floor also has the benefit of unlimited customization by your installer.

Comparison of Maple Hardwood Flooring

(Left: Maple Espresso Distressed / Middle: Maple Chestnut Distressed / Right: Maple Syrup Smooth )


  • With naturally rich chocolate tones, Walnut exudes warmth and charm. This hardwood is also marginally softer than other hardwood species. Walnut also has the additional benefit of reduced photosensitivity when compared to other woods

Comparison of Walnut Hardwood Flooring

(Left: Walnut Antique Distressed / Middle: Walnut Natural Distressed / Right: Acacia Black Walnut)

Red Oak

  • As you can likely derive from its name, Red Oak is known for its blush hues. Atop these warm tones is a unique grain pattern. And much like that of White Oak, this species can sustain scrapes; however, its density leaves it incredibly resistant to impacts.

Comparison of Red Oak Hardwood Flooring

(Left: Red Oak Natural 5″ / Middle: Premium Red Oak Unfinished / Right: Red Oak Natural 3 1/4″)

White Oak

  • While not necessarily as white as its name implies, White Oak commonly features golden and silver tones. As mentioned above, while this hardwood is typically more resistant to impacts than what other floors can endure, it is possible to scuff it.

Comparison of White Oak Hardwood Flooring

(Left: White Oak Golden Oak / Middle: White Oak Autumn Distressed / Right: White Oak Natural )

An Overview

Every hardwood species offers its own unique appeal. While one homeowner may prefer a Maple floor, another may desire European Oak. And in fact, countless individuals opt to mix and match different species in their space to leverage their strengths and benefits.

Your design predilections have no right or wrong. So yes, if that is how you’d prefer to decorate, then it is perfectly alright to install a highly durable Hickory floor in the entryway while your bedroom is soothed by the warmth of Red Oak.