Sun Mountain Blog

Wormy Maple: A Beautiful, Unique + Economical Choice for Doors

Selecting a wood species for your doors is an important step in the process of creating the perfect complement for your home. There are a number of elements to consider: the door’s design; whether you want a natural, stained, or painted finish; and, of course, the cost.

One of 19 wood species offered by Sun Mountain, Wormy Maple may be the perfect choice.

Also called, Ambrosia Maple, Wormy Maple is a grade of Soft Maple, specifically selected and sorted for the mineral streaks and color variations that are produced by an insect called the ambrosia beetle. This beetle bores into the live Maple tree, depositing a fungus that discolors the wood.

The result can be stunning. Colors and flowy patterns vary significantly, from a creamy white sapwood to a beige or tan-colored heartwood, with greenish or very dark brown streaks near small “worm” holes. No two boards are alike.

Wormy Maple Detail

Wormy Maple is strong and stiff but has a relatively low shock resistance. Janka hardness is 940 (the Janka Hardness Test measures the resistance of wood to denting and wear, measuring the force, in pounds, required to embed a 0.444” diameter steel ball into wood to half the ball’s diameter). Wormy Maple has long been a choice for fine, hand-crafted furniture, guitars, and turned decorative items. It’s also a great choice for doors.

And Wormy Maple is economical. It is less expensive than many other popular wood species, including Select Alder, Select Pine, and Knotty White Oak.

The door shown here has one panel (SQ-0100-D001), with unadorned square sticking, built in beautiful Wormy Maple. By choosing a simpler, single panel design and a light-colored finish (Sun Mountain’s Yampa River glaze), the homeowner is highlighting the color and pattern variations that are characteristic of the wood species. This is one of seventeen interior Wormy Maple doors—each unique and spectacular—installed in a Durham, NC, home.