Growth-Quality Evaluation of Black Walnut Wood. Part III-An Anatomical Study of Color Characteristics of Black Walnut Veneer


  • John E. Phelps
  • E. A. McGinnes


Microspectrophotometry, wood anatomy, wood color, <i>Juglans nigra</i> L, veneer


Because wood color is an important quality characteristic in black walnut (Juglans nigra L.), a study was devised to examine some cellular features of heartwood coloration using microspectrophotometric techniques. Five commercially prepared veneer samples exhibiting low macro-luminance (darker) and five exhibiting high macro-luminance (lighter) were chosen for microscopic color analysis. Statistically significant differences were found between the high and low macro-luminance sample groups in the micro-luminance color value in some cellular features (axial parenchyma walls, ray parenchyma walls, fiber walls, and ray parenchyma inclusions). Also observed were large differences in the dominant wavelength of ray parenchyma inclusions between the sample groups. These results suggest that quality of these coloration pigments (phenolics) is more important than quantity for overall color variations.


Berlyn, G. P. 1969. Microspectrophotometric investigations of free space in plant cell walls. Am. J. Bot.56(5):498-506.nDhillon, S. S., G. P. Berlyn, and J. P. Miksche. 1978. Nuclear DNA content in populations of Pinus rigida.Am. J. Bot.65(2):192-196.nFrey-Wyssling, A. 1976. The plant cell wall. Handbuch der Pflanzenanatomie III, 4. Gebruder Borntraeger, Berlin.nFrey-Wyssling, and H. H. Bosshard. 1959. Cytology of the ray cells in sapwood and heartwood. Holz-forschung13(5):129-137.nHillis, W. E. 1972. Formation and properties of some wood extractives. Phytochem.11(4):1207-1218.nHillis, W. E. 1975. Ethylene and extraneous material formation in woody tissues. Phytochem.14:2559-2562.nJudd, D. B. 1933. The 1931 I.C.I. standard observer and coordinate system for colorimetry. J. Opt. Soc. Am.23:359-374.nLange, P. W. 1954. The distribution of the components in the plant cell wall. Sartryck ur Svensk Paperstidning57:1-5.nMcGinnes, E. A., Jr., and P. E. Melcarek. 1976. Equipment for studying the color characteristics of wood at the cellular level. Wood Sci.9(1):46-50.nMcLeish, J., and N. Sunderland. 1961. Measurements of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) in higher plants by feulgen photometry and chemical methods. Exp. Cell. Res.24:527-540.nMoslemi, A. A. 1967. Quantitative color measurement for black walnut wood. USDA For. Ser. Res. Paper NC-17, NC For. Exp. Sta., St. Paul, MN. 16 pp.nNelson, N. D. 1975. Extractives produced during heartwood formation in relation to amounts of parenchyma in Juglans nigra and Quercus rubra.Can. J. For. Res.5:291-301.nNelson, N. D. 1978. Xylem ethylene, phenol-oxidizing enzymes, and nitrogen and heartwood formation in walnut and cherry. Can. J. Bot.56:626-634.nNelson, N. D., and W. A. Heather. 1970. Quantitative color values for the heartwood of various Australian species. Aust. For.33(4):275-280.nParameswaran, N., and J. Bauch. 1975. On the origin of phenolic compounds in the wood rays of Abies alba.Wood Sci. Tech.9:165-173.nPhelps. J. E., E. A. McGinnes, Jr., H. E. Garrett. and G. S. Cox. 1983. Growth-quality evaluation of black walnut wood Part II—Color analyses of veneer produced on different sites. Wood Fiber Sci.15:(2): 177-185.nSmith, D. M. 1967. Microscopic methods for determining cross-sectional cell dimensions. USDA For. Serv. Res. Paper FPL-79. Madison, WI. 20 pp.nWright, W. D. 1969. The measurement of colour. 4th ed. Van Nostrand Reinhold Co., New York, NY. 340 pp.nWyszecki, G., and W. S. Stiles. 1967. Color science: Concepts and methods, quantitative data and formulas. John Wiley and Sons, Inc., New York, NY. 628 pp.n






Research Contributions