Walnut vs Ash Wood Comparison: What’s The Difference

Walnut wood is more durable, strong, and stable than Ash wood. Walnut is moderately rot-resistant whereas ash wood is not rot-resistant. Ash wood is relatively strong and durable for indoor use. 

Walnut Wood

Walnut wood is durable, strong, and dense, and is known for its dark brown color. It has an attractive grain pattern and dark color. Wood is widely used for domestic woodworking.  

Walnut wood comes from large deciduous trees that are native to North and South America, and southern Europe. There are many types of walnuts, some of the most popular are English Walnut Wood, Black Walnut Wood, Claro Walnut Wood, White Walnut Wood, and many more. 

Ash Wood

Ash wood is a beautiful, dark wood that is great for furniture, cabinets, and other wood crafts. The color and grain of ash wood are unique and beautiful.

Ash wood is a smooth-grained hardwood that is most commonly used for making fine and attractive furniture and flooring.

Ash wood comes from flowering trees and it is native to the east coast and parts of Canada. There are many types of Ash wood such as White Ash, Black Ash, Blue Ash, Green Ash, and so on.

Difference between Walnut and Ash wood

#Walnut WoodAsh Wood
Scientific nameJuglans Fraxinus
Distribution:Eastern United StatesNortheastern the United States and Eastern Canada
Tree Height 100-120 feet (30-37 meters)60–120 feet (18–34 meters)
Janka Hardness1010 lbf (4,490 N) (Black walnut)1,320 lbf (5,900 N) (Black Ash)
Common usesFurniture, cabinetry, and gunstocksFlooring, millwork, and, baseball bats

Wood Uses 

Walnut wood is a good choice for making rich dark furniture and cabinets. Walnut is an excellent shock-resistant wood, used for making gunstocks and tool handles. It is also widely used for carving and decorative items.

Ash wood is used for furniture, flooring, cabinetry, boxes/crates, and other turned objects such as tool handles. 

Walnut vs Ash wood: Appearance 

Ash is a light-colored wood, its heartwood is light to medium brown and sapwood is light brown (Always lighter than heartwood). 

Walnut is a dark-colored wood, its heartwood can range from a lighter pale brown to a dark chocolate brown, with black streaks at some places and the sapwood is pale yellow-gray.

Walnut and Ash wood both lighten slightly over time, although the whole process can take years. The process of fading wood is accelerated by constant exposure to sunlight or the external environment.

Which wood is easier to work with? Walnut or Ash wood

Usually, both Ash wood and walnuts are easier to work with hand and machine tools. But walnut wood has irregular or figured grain that can create tear-out problems. Ash wood has straight and regular grains which help in smooth working.

It holds the nail and screw very well. Both are easy to finish and give excellent results. Ash wood is one of the easiest wood to stain, there are many options for ashwood such as Varnish, wax, lacquer, and oil and lacquer is the best choice for finishing walnut wood. 

Which wood is easier to care for?

Walnut wood is easier to maintain because it is naturally rot resistant but ash is not. Whereas ash wood needs more care. 

Walnut wood is considered to have resistance to moisture and rot, but it is pretty prone to insect damage. Therefore it is not used outside.

Walnut or Ash Wood – Which wood is better for outdoor use? 

Walnuts tend to lose their dark color and become silver-gray when exposed to UV rays, Therefore it is not a good idea to use walnut wood for outdoor purposes. 

Walnut wood can be used outdoors if the wood is treated or a finish for the exterior, which preserves the natural color and enhances the wood’s life for a long time.

Ash wood is durable and strong, but also more susceptible to rot so you would not want to use it for outdoor applications.

Walnut vs Ash Wood : Price

Ash wood is slightly cheaper than walnut wood but more expensive than many other hardwoods. The main reason why walnut wood is expensive is its high demand and slow growth rate. 

By the way, the price of wood depends on the quality of the wood and also on the native place.