Do you want to know the types of wood around you? Unfortunately, to the untrained eye, different pieces of wood might look similar despite having very different physical and structural properties.
The good news is that you don’t need special equipment for identification. With the apps we’ll cover here, you’ll be able to identify different types of wood and timber species using your smartphone.
With these apps, all you have to do is take a photo of wood or timber, and they’ll run it through a database to find its name, species, and additional information.
What is the best wood identification app?
Below are the top wood identification apps you should download:
1. Xylorix Inspector
If you are looking for an app that identifies types of wood with extreme accuracy, Xylorix Inspector is a perfect choice.
It is an automated wood identification app that uses artificial intelligence technology to identify the species or genus of a piece of wood in just a few seconds.
Xylorix Inspector works through macroscopic investigation. As a result, you must take a magnified (24 times) picture of a piece of wood’s cross-section (i.e., the end grain).
For this purpose, you must use a dedicated 24X01 illuminated macro-lens, which you attach to your camera to take the magnified image of the timber.
Xylorix Inspector is a free app that you can use to identify wood, which is a great bonus. It is also available on Google Play Store (Android devices) and Apple App Store (iOS devices).
However, the app does have a few challenges.
First, it does not work with normal pictures. Therefore, you must purchase a macro lens to use it. The recommended lens by the app developer is the WIDK-24X01 lens, which goes for $33.90, exclusive of shipping charges.
The second challenge with the Xylorix Inspector is that the app has a limited database. Therefore, there is a chance that you might not be able to identify some types of wood. However, the database is being updated regularly to improve identification accuracy.
CITESwoodID is another app you can use to identify a piece of wood. It offers a computer-aided identification system for CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) protected timber.
The CITESwoodID features an interactive I.D. system and descriptions for 46 common CITE-protected timbers. These include mahogany, rosewood, and ebony.
Furthermore, its database contains over 30 more timbers, easily mistaken with the CITES-protected wood species.
The interactive identification is based on the macroscopic features of the wood, which you can observe with the naked eye or a magnifying hand lens.
Aside from the identification, CITESwoodID also offers detailed descriptions of timber species in its database. The descriptions include high-quality images or colour illustrations and the features and characteristics of each wood species.
On top of that, the app features a textbook feature containing definitions and explanations for features used in the timber description.
CITESwoodID is available on both the Google Play Store (Android devices) and Apple App Store (iOS devices) free of charge. You can also download and use the app on your Windows 7, 8, or 10 laptop or PC.
3. Forest Tree Identification
Unlike the above apps that identify wood from the structural image of timber, Forest Tree Identification identifies the entire tree. The app can also use pictures of leaves to identify trees.
To use Forest Tree Identification, take a photo of the leaves of the trees you want to identify. Then, set filters such as colour, shape, and other leaf details.
The app will then search for corresponding leaves that match the set filters. The search can be done online or offline by comparing the leaves with the pictures in the app’s database.
Asides from tree identification, the Forest Tree Identification app curates articles about trees and their locations. Therefore, you can use the app to learn about various trees that grow around you worldwide.
4. I.D. Wood
The I.D. Wood is an excellent app on your phone if you plan on undertaking DIY wood projects or want to know more about the types of wood around you.
In addition, it is a great wood identification application, offering detailed information about various wood species.
I.D. Wood contains a database with over two hundred species of wood that are used both indoors and outdoors.
The database features clear images of the wood alongside other identifying information such as the species name, botanical names, origins, and description.
On top of that, the app offers additional important information such as common uses, structural properties, durability, hardiness, and sustainability, among others.
5. Tree ID
Tree ID is a tree identification app developed by the Woodland Trust, the largest woodland conservation charity in the U.K.
It is the best app for identifying British trees and contains a database of over 200 common native and non-native trees in the European country.
Tree ID uses various modes of identification – pictures of leaves, flowers, fruits, twigs, buds, or barks. It also comes with an A-Z guide with clear images of the trees, which you can use.
On top of that, it contains educational information such as interesting facts, history, folklore, uses, etc. The app works offline, so you don’t need an internet connection.
On top of that, it contains a feature where you can record and map the location of the trees you have found, which you can then share with friends or add the locations to a public map.
Identify any tree or wood species
Identifying wood and trees is essential whether you are working on a woodworking project, learning about timber, or simply getting to know the trees and wood around you. The above are some of the top applications you can use to identify wood around you.
With these apps, you don’t have to search through dozens of books to find the wood or tree you want to identify; install one or a few on your phone, and you are good to go.
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Carla is a student pursuing a B.S in Agricultural Systems Technology. With a passion for landscaping for over 4 years, Carla loves plants. She has previously contributed to several other sites in the space before joining InsightWeeds.