Wood in General
Faerûn is a land of trees, sporting a great variety of such flora. Trees of the Realms include: apple, ash, cedar, cherry, walnut, coconut palm, date palm, darkwood, duskwood, ironwood, oak, pine, and yew. In warmer regions, the date palm, coconut palm, are common. Evergreens exist in the northern regions, and most hardwoods live in the central forests. Yew is present throughout Faerûn,
It is a large deciduous tree growing to 98' tall, with a trunk 1.5'–6' diameter. The bark is smooth and gray on young trees, becoming fissured with age. The wood is white, strong, and straight-grained. It is the timber of choice for production of quality clubs, cudgels and tool handles. The wood is also favorable for furniture and flooring. It makes a very servicable longbow if properly worked.
Cedars are trees up to 100' tall with spicy-resinous scented wood, thick ridged or square-cracked bark, and broad, level branches. They are also known for their durable, scented, and vibrantly colored wood. It is commonly used for shakes and shingles on many dwellings. Cedar wood and cedar oil is known to be a natural repellent to moths, hence cedar is a popular lining for closets, and chests in which woolens are stored.
The tree is a medium-sized evergreen, reaching 65' tall. This slow growing tree is native to dry and intermediate zones. Darkwood is one of the most intensely black woods known, which, combined with its very high density (it is one of the woods that sink in water), fine texture, and ability to polish very smoothly, has made it very valuable as an ornamental wood.
The name Darkwood is also held by a rare magic wood with unknown origins that is hard as normal wood but very light. Any wooden or mostly wooden item(such as a bow, an arrow, or a spear) made from this darkwood weighs half that of a normal item.
Duskwood trees are 60' tall. These straight trees have smooth, bare trunks marked by crowns of tiny branches. Duskwoods are named for the dark, eerie appearance of stands of these closely-clustered black trunks. Under the black bark (which shows a silver-gray color when newly broken or peeled) is wood that is smoky gray when cut - and as hard as iron. Most mast spars and building beams are made of mature Duskwood trunks. They are hard and resistant to fire, and they smolder rather than blaze when set aflame. As a result, duskwood trees tend to survive forest fires and the axes of woodcutters seeking firewood.
Ironwood trees have thin straight trunks reaching well over 60' - 100' tall. The trunks themselves are covered in smooth Grey bark. with thin branches sporting dark green spear-tip shaped leaves. The trees themselves are highly fire resistant.Commonly referred to, among lumberjacks and loggers of the realms as simply "axe-breakers", the wood once harvested is comparable to iron and can even be shaped in a forge much the same as conventional metals. Though the wood is much to heavy for most applications, it can be used in support beams and incredibly sturdy doors.
Various Dead trees abound across the surface of Faerûn. The type of tree before death matters little as their wood is good for little but cheap planks or possibly ground down to produce a crude form of paper.
Normally not a very tall tree, typically 65-85 feet tall, it nonetheless becomes quite massive and its lower branches are apt to reach far out laterally parallel to the ground. Oak wood is commonly used for furniture making and flooring, timber frame buildings, and for veneer production. Red wines, sherry, brandy and spirits such as whiskey, and bourbon are commonly aged in barrels constructed from oak.
Pines are evergreen and resinous trees growing to 10'– 260' tall, The smallest are the cold loving Rock Pines, found high on various peaks all over Faerun. The bark of most pines is thick and scaly, but some species have thin, flaking bark a notable exception the rock pines bark has unique magical properties. Pine wood is widely used in high-value/low cost carpentry items such as furniture, window frames, paneling, floors and roofing.
Yew is the wood of choice for longbow making; the bows are constructed so that the heartwood of yew is on the inside of the bow while the sapwood is on the outside. This takes advantage of the natural properties of yew wood since the heartwood is able to withstand compression while the sapwood is elastic and allows the bow to stretch. Both tend to return to their original straightness when the arrow is released. Much yew is knotty and twisted, so unsuitable for bowmaking; most trunks do not give good staves and even in a good trunk much wood has to be discarded.
Volo's Guide To All Things Magical