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Discover the majesty of Southern African wood this Heritage Day with Briza

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The Southern African subcontinent is rich with a large variety of indigenous tree species that range from small shrubs to ancient, towering giants. Yet, while the beautiful environments in which these trees grow are often studied and many great books exist on identifying trees, growing them and studying them, little is truly known about their wood.

Why learn about wood

Wood is an important natural resource and one of the few that is actually renewable. It is fixed part in our everyday lives, our cultures, and even our development as Man. From using wood to make fire, to cook, to create early tools, shelter, and even early artifacts used for religious purposes, wood runs through our veins.

Moreover, in today’s world, wood is evermore engrained in our lives as a economic resource used to create wood-frame houses and furniture, newspapers, books, and magazines, fence posts and utility poles, fuelwood, and textile fabrics. Wood and wood products are also a store for carbon, thus, helping to minimize carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

What is there to learn about wood

Wood is an interesting a diverse topic to study. Several of the following aspects can be learnt such as:

  • Its historical use
  • Its sustainability and availability
  • Harvesting and processing wood
  • The commercial growing of it in Southern Africa
  • Woodworking and health
  • The identification of it
  • Its properties

So when you’re sitting by the camp fire this heritage day, think a bit deeper about that that piece of wood you throw on the fire as it is not just a piece of natural fuel but also a deeply treasured part of our natural heritage.

If this has captured your interest, get the Guide to the properties and Uses of Southern African wood to learn more about this fascinating topic


Guide to the properties and uses of Southern African Wood is the only commercially available book which focuses on the properties of Southern African wood, written in a style that will appeal to a wide audience: professional woodworkers, designers, architects, wood dealers and wood collectors, hobbyists, botanists and anyone interested in trees and wood.

Also availalbe in Afrikaans!

Guide to the properties and uses of Southern African Wood
  • Provides information on historical uses, where trees grow, availability and sustainability of the wood and the practicalities of harvesting and processing.
  • Guide to woodworking and health
  • Species treatments, uses, mechanical properties, durability, identification features, woodworking properties and comments from wood users on workability.
  • Comprehensive guide to identifying Southern African trees
  • Beautiful full-colour photographs of tree bark, untreated and treated wood, end-grain macrographs, as well as worked items.

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