Southern Yellow Pine

Well, SYP is a real all-rounder for Furniture making but it comes into its own for Flooring, Decking for interior/exterior Joinery and also Structural work. For all you classic pine lovers out there, this big tough species will be right up your street.

What’s in a Name?

The name Southern Yellow Pine includes the following species; Pinus palustris, Pinus elliottii, Pinus echinata, Pinus taeda and as the name suggests, originating from the Southern States of  N.America e.g. from Virginia to Florida and along the Gulf Coast. Southern Yellow Pine is also referred to as American Pitch Pine, Gulf Coast Pine, Long Leaf Pitch Pine and Loblolly Pine.


Southern Yellow Pine is big timber, in size and visual qualities. Its grain is broad, strong and vibrant because the annual growth rings of the tree are very marked. The overall coloring is creamy yellow with the marked growth rings a rich reddy-brown. We think SYP is a very handsome looking timber and have found that it’s graphics ‘woodgrain’ look means it’s growing in popularity all the time.

Basic Info

The Southern Yellow Pine is known to be the hardest, strongest pine in existence and it’s is fairly durable and resistant to decay. For us, the striking characteristics of this timber are it’s big, distinctive grain pattern, the large dimensions, and durability. An interesting combination of qualities for a creative designer maker or joiner to work with. Southern Yellow Pine is not common, in fact, it’s probably underutilized so for projects that need something different it’s worth considering. The size of boards also helps, as it makes an amazing floor for large spaces. With good mechanical strength and inherent toughness, help make it practical even if it is a softwood.

It doesn’t necessarily take treatments well because it’s resinous but we’ve never had any trouble with finishing using Osmo oil on our samples. It machines well, although resin can gum up tools. It holds nails and screws well. It can take glue, stains, polish. It is good for steam bending as it is mechanically strong but resistant to splitting and shock. Bit of a knockout timber really!


The Pine trees of this species grow to 30m and usually about 750mm in diameter, so not small by any means.  The resulting timber is generally wide and long due to the stability of the tree. Our stock is generally 25mm & 32mm thick sawn boards (so will be thinner when planed).


Well, SYP is a real all-rounder for Furniture making but it comes into its own for Flooring, Decking for interior/exterior Joinery and also Structural work.


SYP stock typically comes in square edge packs of 25mm & 32mm, sold by the board in very consistent quality and sizing. The boards are pretty flat so don’t always need as much planning to thickness. Widths are usually big at 300mm and big lengths too at 4.2m to 4.9m that really show off the grain of those big straight trees. The grade we keep is quite high and therefore not as knotty as it could be. We do love the knotty grades but we found the boards in this particular grade emphasize the visual appearance of the wide widths and long lengths so well. Although if you did need something with more character going on we’d be happy to source something for you.

Wood Type Softwood Moisture movement Medium
Mechanical Strength General strength close to that of Douglas Fir Texture Medium
Durability Slightly durable Density (Kg/m3 at 12% moisture) 670but varies by up to 20% +/-
Moisture Movement Small Use(s) Furniture making, Flooring, Decking and Structural work
Treatability Extremely difficult apart from sapwood Colour(s) Light yellowish orange to dark reddish or yellowish brown