Hem-Fir is a species combination of Western Hemlock and the true firs (Noble, California Red, Grand, Pacific Silver and White fir). With strength properties slightly below Douglas Fir-Larch, this is an extremely versatile species group and useful for multiple, general-purpose framing applications. In the structural framing grades, Hem-Fir is capable of meeting the span requirements of many installations.
Hem-Fir is often considered by those seeking wood with a very light color as the most desirable of the Western softwoods. It is as light or lighter in color than some of the Western pines but stronger. Products are available in structural, appearance and remanufacturing grades. It is easily pressure treated with preservatives, making it useful for decks and other outdoor amenities.
Hem-Fir products are white to a light straw color, sometimes with a slight lavender cast, especially around the knots and in the transition area between the spring and summerwood's growth rings. The heartwood is not distinct. Sometimes small, delicate dark grey or black streaks appear in the wood. Hem-Fir is fine grained and even textured, with a refined appearance. In the clear and nearly clear appearance grades, these products lend formality to wood interiors. Hem-Fir is often specified for high quality case goods, doors, moulding and millwork.