Fires wound trees; but not all of them, and not always. Specific fire behavior and differences among tree species and individual trees produce variable patterns of wounding and wound response. Our work focuses on the relationships between fire behavior and tree biology to better understand how hardwood trees resist injury to the lower stem and either survive or succumb to low-intensity fire. Our objectives here were to 1) define and describe the wounding process, 2) to describe compartmentalization and wound closure and 3) to discuss species-specific differences among several common hardwood trees in the resistance to injury and resilience after wounding. Characteristics of fire scars are summarized.