Sugar Maple – The American Heartland Miracle Wood

The Basics

There are well over one hundred varieties of maple in the world and they are put to a wide variety of uses.  It is used to smoke foods, decorate lawns, distill Tennessee Whiskey, fashion musical instruments and much more.  One variety, sugar maple (also know as rock or hard maple), is used for both making maple syrup and crafting fine furniture.  Sugar maple is at the heart of most McClure Butcher Block.


Maple grows essentially in three locations. North America, Europe and South East Asia grow the overwhelming majority of the worlds’ maple trees. Most sugar maple is grown in the North Eastern United States. All maple used in McClure tables is Michigan grown.


Sugar maple holds many advantages over other varieties and other tree species in general. It grows quickly. It will grow in a wide variety of soil types. It can survive as a small plant under a sun blocking canopy of trees and then explode in height gain when it catches some rays of light.  This patient and opportunistic approach makes it a hearty tree.


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Flame maple guitar top

It’s not sugar maples perseverance but its strength and beauty that make it so attractive to builders of all stripes. Not just butcher block but bowling pins and baseball bats because of its resilience.  Fine furniture and high end musical instrument manufacturer’s value hard maple for its many unpredictable grain patterns as well as its durability. An item made of rock maple is made for the ages.

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The many faces of maple

There is no more uniquely American tree than the sugar maple.  Its patience and endurance directly reflects the American Midwest it grows in. Because it bares pollen early in the spring season it supports honeybees until the plants that feed us are ready for them.  Maple, for the cutting board under your knife, the wood in your stove, the maple syrup in your seasoning, the table you serve dinner on and on and on. Baseball, bowling, shuffleboard tables, pool cues, guitars, flutes and snare drums.  Maple at the heart of America and at the heart of McClure.

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