Silky Oak is not actually an oak which you can probably guess from it’s scientific name – Grevillea robusta. Having said that it’s not an oak, it can have a remarkable resemblance to English Oak; to the point where it would be easy to confuse the two when looking at antique furniture.
The tree itself is not related to any species of oak and doesn’t look like one either; it is a native of New South Wales and Queensland so we don’t see it much here in Tasmania. It is yet another timber considered to be quite hard to get hold of thanks to the efforts of earlier generations in cutting them down. We only ever get to see it in shed finds and is highly prized when we do find it.
The timber has quite distinctive ‘rays’ or ‘flecks’ through it and makes for beautiful trinket boxes, etc. It works pretty well; not unlike your typical Eucalypt and, due to it’s rarity and amazing grain patterns, it highly valued by us.
Agro Forestry: http://www.agroforestry.net.au/main.asp?_=Silky%20Oak