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Kunzea Kunzea ericoides
KIWI LUMBER OF GREAT BEAUTY
It is said that Captain Cook, the great British explorer, was the first person to brew tea from the leaves of kanuka, which is also known as kunzea. It is a relatively small tree and the lumber is tough, with a gnarled look. It was formerly used for beaters, paddles, weapons, blades and wheel spokes. Today it is converted into charcoal, but it is also a fine lumber with fairly straight grain and is both durable and strong. It has some similarities to teak (Tectona grandis) or English oak (Quercus robur).

KEY CHARACTERISTICS
Type Temperate hardwood
Other names Kanuka, manuka, K. ericifolia
Sources New Zealand
Color Rich mid- to dark brown, with darker streaks and some evidence of gum pockets
Texture Fine, but not entirely uniform
Grain Generally straight
Hardness Medium hard with reasonable luster
Weight Medium to heavy (45 lb./cu. ft.) (720 kg/cu. m)

AVAILABILITY AND SUSTAINABILITY
Not a wood exploited for its lumber, and essential for the harvest of its leaves, so any wood available was probably ready for felling and probably replaced. It isn't easy to find, but won't be particularly expensive to buy.



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