Dark Wood Flooring

An Introduction to Dark Hardwood Flooring

While there are many naturally dark wood species available, not all of them are suitable for flooring purposes. The most common reason why a hardwood could not be used in flooring applications is due to its soft composition. Such pliable woods are named softwoods, whereas, harder woods are called …. Hardwoods! Hardwoods are most commonly used in applications where they will undergo intensive interaction such as baseball bats, furniture, boat building, and flooring!

While there are exceptions as with anything, most hardwood species share common characteristics such as harder densities and slower growth rates. It should be noted that while wood and hardwood may be used interchangeably within this article, unless otherwise mentioned, we will only be referring to hardwood.


Naturally Dark Wood

Now to begin, the most commonly available naturally dark wood is Walnut. Offered in various types, perhaps the most common is Black Walnut. Its deep chocolate tones, straight grain patterns, and astounding beauty have led to its enduring popularity.

Mahogany is yet another naturally dark hardwood that exudes splendor and warmth. While not as broadly available as Walnut, Mahogany is gradually gaining traction due to its rich cherry shades and outstanding strength. Now you may be saying to yourself, “Mahogany doesn’t seem to be very dark in the picture.” Well, you are actually somewhat spot-on! Part of the natural magnificence of Mahogany is due to its tones developing and intensifying with age.

Top 2 Naturally Dark Hardwoods

  1. Walnut – Naturally dark hardwood with rich chocolate tones
  2. Mahogony – While lighter in color at first, Mahogany develops a darker color with time


Stained Dark Wood

As you may know if you have read our other articles, most hardwood floors available currently are prefinished. This just means that they were treated, stained, and finished for added durability and brighter or more varied tones. In fact, even the naturally dark wood species mentioned above will undergo staining and finishing.

With stains, the sky is the limit! If you want your naturally light White Oak floor to have a rich charcoal shade, then sure! Or maybe your unfinished Birch hardwood floor doesn’t match that wine-toned shade you have been fantasizing about? Just stain it!

And don’t worry if you are concerned that the Walnut floor you selected is naturally too light. As mentioned before, even dark woods experience staining.



Whether you select a naturally dark hardwood for your floor or a stained hardwood, know that achieving your dream flooring color is possible!

And if you are interested in a color, but don’t see it available – you can always customize it with Garrison Custom. Click here to learn more.

We hope this guide was helpful and if you would like more information or have any additional questions, we encourage you to contact us.