Screen Shot 2015-01-03 at 9.32.27 PMI have just finished reading Spike Carlsen’s ‘Splintered History of Wood’.  It is truly facinating! 

The violins at the concert you attended last week, the baseball bats at the ball game you watched last night, the telephone poles that carried your digital messages earlier today In a world without wood, none of these would exist. Nor would you have the roof over your head, the pencil in your pocket or the cork you popped from the pinot noir last night. Though we often take wood for granted, it’s a substance that touches us in a real and personal way every day.

A Splintered History of Wood examines this remarkable substance and the stories it has to tell. Whether it’s unlocking the secrets behind a Stradivarius violin, visiting the world’s most extraordinary woodworkers or entering a belt sander race, author Spike Carlsen carves out fifty-five stories in which wood plays the starring role. Woodworkers, history buffs, musicians, sports fans and those simply interested in the world around them, are sure to find stories that entertain and inform.  Read an extract here.

14I particularly liked the section on the worlds oldest harvested wood Kauri . This slab of Kauri wood, unearthed from a New Zealand bog after 50,000 years, is knot–free and arguably the largest single board in the world. That would make quite a coffee table!  You can see the size of the log here.


Did you know that The Diamond Company produces more than eight billion toothpicks each year in its Minnesota factory. Diamond, owned by Alltrista Consumer Products Company, is the only company that produces toothpicks in the U.S.

You can get your own copy here