Of all Tasmanian timbers, sassafras has the most variable and dynamic colouring. It is a beautiful and pale creamy grey to white normally but can be streaked with rich browns and black heart. Sassafras can be found in Tasmania’s native forests, but also in Victoria and NSW. It generally grows in well-drained rainforests in cool damp conditions, in Tasmania, it is one of the dominant species. You will find places in these states that are called Sassafras, usually along gullies and creek lines and it grows from sea level to around 800 metres.
It is available in two major groupings; Golden sassafras and Blackheart sassafras. Finishing to a grey and golden tone, golden sassafras is particularly attractive as a veneer or as a solid timber with knots providing figure. If the tree is infected with a staining fungus it produces Blackheart sassafras. Blackheart is a timber with distinctive dark brown, black, and even green streaks running through the wood. Blackheart is highly prized for decorative work and bowl turning as no two pieces are ever the same.