You recently posted a photo of how poachers mangled a redwood for its burl. I am not accusing, I am asking sincerely, how can I know the legit from the poached?
This is a good question. I do the best I can to make sure it is not poached. Everyone I purchased from has to sign an agreement and give the address where the burl was harvested with a permission slip if they do not own the property. Then I take a photocopy of their ID and place it on the agreement where they sign and date and give me their phone number. I keep that paperwork on file. Anyone who does not want to give me their ID I do not purchase from .
What kind of wood grows locally in your area
I deal mostly with maple, madrone and walnut but was also have cotton wood, black, tan and white oak, myrtle wood, locust and yew to name a few. I have had and seen burl in all of these species.
Why is it so hard to get a large 36" or better maple burl cap that is round? And how much can I expect to pay when you get one in?
Any large high quality burl cap is hard to find, they are few and far between. Either they are oblong or have inclusions. But they are out there and if you are willing to wait and not compromise, you will find them. You can expect to pay $2 or more per pound for the high quality burl cap that has any depth to it.
What kind of precautions do I need to take once I receive a burl?
You want to make sure that it stays in a cool place. Not too much fluctuation in temperature. If you have wax you will want to wax all six sides or just the exposed cut edge.