Turning Archive 2005

Anyone have experience with rhododendron?

Dave Smith, Longview, WA
>A neighbor dropped off some large pieces of rhododendron this afternoon. The pieces are upwards of 8" in diameter. Unfortunately he cut the plant last week and just thought of me today. A considerable amount of wood was lost due to cracking on the exposed ends. I am processing what I can save. There are a couple of bowls soaking this evening that were turned from a large crotch. He also left a piece of wood that he said was from a shrub that has white leaves. That really narrows it down. It is twisted like a wisteria or grape vine. At about 4" in diameter and a foot long I hope to get something out of it.

The bowls turned so far are 7" in diameter and were taken to 1/2" and 3/8" in thickness. It won't take too long to find out if that was a bad idea. I reckon that by the weekend the bowls will be potato chips, split kindling, or about ready to turn. The wood is light in color but shows some indication of grain variation. Can I expect the color to darken when it is dry and exposed to light?

Dave Smith

Collector of odd wood in Longview, WA.

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