Gorgeous elm burrs...

29 April 2018, Woodturning in practice, Would you like to leave a comment?

I removed these beautiful burrs from an elm trunk a few months ago and have just managed to rough them out for drying - a job I’ve been looking forward to for quite some time!

Burr elm is an incredible wood, as there is so much happening with the grain. However, those delicate spikes often end up getting damaged, when the tree has been felled and extracted. Luckily, this trunk was unmarked and just required a clean. Once the burr had been pressure washed, the details started to emerge.

The natural features of burr are quite remarkable…


The top of each one has been hollowed out, to assist drying. When completed, they will be of a similar shape, but with a larger inner bowl. Those spikes underneath are staying untouched!...


There were six burrs in total, ranging in shape and size. The finished pieces will be fine sanded, with the rest left on show. They’re dry enough to go straight in the kiln and should be ready to finish in around eight weeks time. I can’t wait to see them polished up and oiled!


Jonathan Leech

Written by Jonathan Leech

Jonathan Leech is a woodturner working and living in Cumbria. He specialises in making bowls, dishes and platters from local sustainably sourced timber. Read more or about Jonathan or see a selection of his work.

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