Karelian Birch: a special tree
Karelian Birch (aslso known as Masur Birch) is not an independent species of birch, but rather a birch with a unique grain pattern that makes it stand apart. The patterning in the wood was once considered to be bores from a species of beetle in the Karelian (Norway, Russia, Finland) Region, but now proven to be hereditary.
It isn't difficult to see why this wood would be coveted-- its beautiful grain add another dimension to any woodwork, be it a frame for the protrait of a favored Russian saint or extravagant furnature. As the wood comes only from this region, posessing item made of the wood has almost an exclusive feel.
Karelian Birch in Culture:
Nicholas II was known to have comissioned works made of this valuable wood at the turn of the history