A deciduous, fruit-bearing tree, Prunus serotina, native to North America. Black cherry has a dense, close-grain wood that polishes to a high gloss. The reddish-brown wood is used for musical instruments, furniture, cabinetry, interior trim, and paneling. Black cherry gum, a water-soluble carbohydrate, has been used as a medium for watercolor paints.
Synonyms and Related Terms
Prunus serotina; cerezo americano, capulí (Esp.); ciliegio americano (It.); cabinet cherry; rum cherry; wild black cherry; black cherry gum
Physical and Chemical Properties
- Medium tree growing to 30 m with tall oblong crown.
- Bark= smooth with narrow horizontal lenticels when young breaking into rough irregular plates with age
- Leaves=alternate simple oblong (6-14 cm) with serrated edges.
- Fruit=dark purple round drupe (1 cm) maturing in late summer.
Resources and Citations
- R.J. Adrosko, Natural Dyes in the United States, Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, DC, 1968
- G.S.Brady, Materials Handbook, McGraw-Hill Book Co., New York, 1971 Comment: p. 184
- Ralph Mayer, A Dictionary of Art Terms and Techniques, Harper and Row Publishers, New York, 1969 (also 1945 printing)
- F. H. Titmuss, Commercial Timbers of the World, The Technical Press Ltd., London, 1965
- Dictionary of Building Preservation, Ward Bucher, ed., John Wiley & Sons, Inc., New York City, 1996
- Virginia Tech Dendrology website at www.fw.vt.edu/dendro/dendrology/main.htm (Accessed Dec. 9, 2005)
- Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prunus_serotina (Accessed Dec. 9, 2005)
- Random House, Webster's Encyclopedic Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language, Grammercy Book, New York, 1997
- The American Heritage Dictionary or Encarta, via Microsoft Bookshelf 98, Microsoft Corp., 1998