Am working on two projects; one a cedar bench; the other a small shelf made from a Sequia root. The question is about how to clean and prepare the wood. The backrest of the cedar bench is from a cedar timber that shows the characteristics of the presence of capenter ants when the tree was timbered. The Sequia root after cutting the shape of the shelf has the outer bark in areas. Both wood pieces I would like to keep these characteristics, but have not a clue on what to clean them with without damaging the character of the wood. So before I finish them what is the best way to prepare them?