Color: Red birch is the heartwood only. The wood is generally straight-grained with a fine uniform texture. Generally characterized by a plain and often curly or wavy pattern. In good lighting can present a cinnamon/gold luster. The heartwood is light reddish brown tinged with red. In sweet birch (B. lenta), sapwood is light colored and heartwood is dark brown tinged with red.
Grain: Medium figuring, straight, closed grain, even texture. Occasional curly grain or wavy figure in some boards.
Variations Within Species And Grades: Yellow birch, sweet birch, paper birch. Paper birch (B. papyrifera) is softer and lower in weight and strength than yellow or sweet birch. However, yellow birch is most commonly used for flooring. Boards can vary greatly in grain and color.