thorny rose bushes anybody ever turned the wood.

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Forum topic by Richard posted 07-27-2010 02:57 AM 15247 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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394 posts in 4575 days

07-27-2010 02:57 AM

I came across some rose bushes that must of been growing for the last 70 plus years. The main stem was almost as big as my leg and I wonder if anybody has turned something like this. The main stem is thorny as heck and it would take some doing to remove it, but it might have some interesting grain for pens and such.

-- Richard Boise, Idaho

8 replies so far

View John Ormsby's profile

John Ormsby

1288 posts in 5191 days

#1 posted 07-27-2010 03:11 AM

I think it will work well if you stabilize the wood. This must be done while the wood is still green. Stablizing is a process where the water is replaced with a synthetic epoxy, poly, or other type of penetrating chemicals. Hte wood will become plastic like. This is done a lot in the making of knife scales and fishing reel seats. It might be worth a try. At least an interesting study.

BTW, you make some very nice trunks.

-- Oldworld, Fair Oaks, Ca

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980 posts in 4504 days

#2 posted 07-27-2010 06:21 AM


Most turners (I own a nice lathe, but it’s still in the box—you can see what my advice will be worth) like to turn green (wet) wood, so start the turning and put it in a brown paper bag sealed tightly until dryer and remount and finish. Or start the turning, get it close and seal with pentofin. Post some pics, please. Have you gotten into a piece to see what it looks like? As far as unusual material for turning, I’ve heard of people turning POISON IVY STEMS! They dry it thoroughly and report no problems. I’ll pass on that.


-- Steve in KY. 44 years so far with my lovely bride. Think I'll keep her.

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394 posts in 4575 days

#3 posted 07-28-2010 07:22 AM

No, I didn’t get to harest those thick rose bushes, but if I ever in the right place where some are going to be taken out, I would like to try turning some thick rose bush stems. I bet the thorns are imbedded in the wood as the wood grows and I suppose they might have an interesting pattern. So someone has probally turned some aged rose bush stems.

-- Richard Boise, Idaho

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1443 posts in 4503 days

#4 posted 07-28-2010 11:48 AM

Dont know anything about turning or ever seen a rose bush that actually had a trunk, but my advice is -give it a go! You dont know what you have until you try.
Good luck with it all. If you actually do go ahead with it, dont forget to post it. It certainly would be interesting to see it.

-- Theresa,

View JenJ's profile


1 post in 3351 days

#5 posted 03-16-2013 11:11 PM

Hi Lumberjocks,
The thorns don’t go all the way in, they seem to grow from the bark, not from the core like branches do. I just started carving some stems into wands and it is nice wood to work with. Hard as buggery on the outside, but the center core of my pieces are real soft, actually very crumbly. In fact it makes me think you could make a flute or some beads out of it if you sliced it.

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1676 posts in 4217 days

#6 posted 03-17-2013 05:37 PM

I’ve turned rose root burl – beautiful wood. The few I’ve turned were black, almost to the point of ebony. Easy to cut and finish. It does pull the silica out of the soil, like mesquite, so sharpen often.

-- When I was a kid I wanted to be older . . . . . this CRAP is not what I expected ! RIP 09/08/2018

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1 post in 1964 days

#7 posted 01-01-2017 10:46 AM

Happy New Year!!!! 2017:)
Wow this post is from 2010 and some from 2013 I am here in 2017 reading this to see if somebody else is working with rose wood but nut much. I haven’t turned rose wood but I did some hand carving and the piece I had was a small piece of a 10-year-old rose bush. The wood was white and pretty hard I don’t have much experience to compare it with other woods but there were not thorns in it. There were thorns on the outside but that was it there are no thorns on the inside as one would imagine. I tried to peel a thorn from a living rose and it was pretty easy, it just peeled from the stem.
The best part for me was the places where the knots they were forming. The knots are contrasting the white wood with dark brown color and it gives the wood a character.
I have made rings, tobacco pipes and some fine decoration with stone inlays so far with the rose wood.
Hope others are working with the rose wood and are willing to share their experience with us.
I soon will be posting all my woodworks on my website so feel free to come by and check out my work in a month from now :)

View dddddmorgan's profile


91 posts in 2582 days

#8 posted 01-01-2017 03:56 PM

Well here I am an expert for once in my life!

30 years ago we bought a little house that was built in the 40’s and had the original rose bushes still intact. The old gal that was original to the house hadn’t trimmed them for maybe 20 years, they were 6’ tall and I found “trunks 4” across at the base.

Per instructions from the boss I split two roots and completely moved one.

The one moved bush died and I got the same idea you have Richard!

My turning skills and knowledge at that time left much to be desired… Only one project stayed together to make a candlestick. It has since been lost but it came out beautifully. As you might imagine it’s very tricky to work with but I’d do it again if the opportunity presented itself.

-- Maintenance Man - I do precision guesswork based on unreliable data from people of questionable knowledge...

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