Morta, or Bog Oak, is a semi-petrified wood that is thousands of years old. Morta is only found in a few places in the world. The quality of Morta needed to make a tobacco pipe is rare, much harder to find than briar or meerschaum. The wood comes from ancient oak trees that have been submerged in swamps or bogs. Over the years the minerals in the water replace the tannins, sap, and other soft parts of the wood. What is left is essentially part wood and part stone.
Recovery of the Oak logs is very difficult. The murky waters that it is found in offers very low visibility to the divers. Processing the wood once it is pulled from the water is an exacting process and if not done correctly the entire log will not be usable. Even when everything is handled correctly, there is still a lot of the wood that is not usable. This is especially true for the quality of Morta needed for pipe making as it must be free of voids.
What makes Morta work so well as a tobacco pipe is how the minerals have impregnated the wood. Morta pipes smoke more like a Meerschaum or clay pipe than they do a briar. They smoke dry and the wood does not impart a flavor to the tobacco either. Smoking out of a Morta pipe is a perfect way to experience the tobacco without the pipe influencing the flavors. Meerschaum pipes work this way as well, however they are known to be very fragile and delicate. Morta is a very strong material. It is also a very striking material with colors ranging from black, copper and the very rare red Morta.
Davorin Morta Pipes is one of the leaders in the Morta Pipe segment. The pipes pictured here are ones from Davorin. Be sure to check out Davorin's website for some more information on Morta. English is not his first language, he is from Croatia, and some of the writing can be a little hard to follow but it is well worth the read. You can find his website here. The bog oak used in his pipes comes from Croatia. Some of the best and oldest Morta is found in the rivers and bogs in Croatia. For example, the oldest log pulled from the River Krapina has been dated as being 8290 years old.
The different colors in Morta are typically an indication of how old the wood is. The darkest, almost black, Morta is around 7,000-8,000 years old. That means this wood had been in the bog for at least 3,000 years before the first Pyramid was built in Egypt. The lighter, copper colored Morta is between 3,000 and 5,000 years old. Just think of the historic events that have happened while this wood was under water turning into Morta.
To see our current stock of Davorin Morta Pipes click this link. If you have any questions or would like to speak to us about any of our products please do not hesitate to call us at (479)434-5627 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org