Ambrosia Maple Provides that Special Look

Have you ever heard of ambrosia maple?  Some people call it wormy soft maple. In short, they are the same!

44 Wormy Soft Maple Smyrna 2What we list as wormy soft maple in our hardwood lumber stock lists is the term used for soft maple lumber, (Acer Rubrum), with dark streaks of discoloration throughout the board.  This discoloration occurs in soft maple when the ambrosia beetle infects the trees and leaves larvae behind that bore a shallow channel and deposit a fungus in the wood which causes the discoloration.  That’s why some in the industry will refer to this as ambrosia maple!

We find that wormy soft maple is harvested mostly in sandy, wet areas.  For us it appears mostly in our sawmills in Central New York and Michigan due to their close proximity to Lake Erie and Lake Michigan.

Most of the time it is our furniture manufacture customers that are inquiring about wormy soft maple. They use it for draw sides, frames and exterior parts of many custom furniture items where they are looking for that special, unique look. 

Today, wormy soft maple has become more of a specialty item.  The worm like variations are now regularly considered a decorative feature, much like a rustic or character grade hardwood lumber product, and this feature is growing in demand and price.

It is not considered to be a lumber with defects.  The oblong shaped color patterns that appear like worm holes are still structurally sound and is sometimes  talked about as soft maple worm holes no defects (WHND).

Baillie Lumber sorts out our wormy soft maple and offers it as a separate lumber product. We offer it as a 2 Common & Better, random width and length, product with nothing pulled out.  However, our stock runs heaviest to 1 Common and Better and our thicknesses usually range from 4/4” to 10/4”.

So contact us today and ask us about our wormy soft maple.  We would be happy to help!

Tony Cimorelli
Baillie Lumber
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