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PADOUK D`AFRIQUE (Pterocarpus osun)

Trade Name

Padouk d`Afrique

Scientific Name

Pterocarpus osun



Common Names

Osun (Nigeria); Paduk (Italy); Padauk (United Kingdom); Camwood (United Kingdom); Barwood (United Kingdom); African Padauk (United Kingdom); Padoek (Netherlands); Padauk (Germany); Afrikanisches Padouk (Germany); Corail (Belgium); N'gula (Zaire); Mukula (Zaire); Mongola (Zaire); Mbel (Gabon); Palo rojo (Equatorial Guinea); Kisésé (Congo); Mbel (Cameroon); Tacula (Angola)

Description Of The Tree

Botanical Description

The tree reaches a height of 32 to 43 m. The bole is cylindrical, with low buttresses, sometimes winding. The trunk diameter attains 70 to 130 cm, occasionally up to 170 cm. Log is banned for international trading.(Cameroon)

Natural Habitat

Pterocarpus osun is common in dense equatorial rain forests, often in small groups.

Natural Distribution

Central and tropical West Africa, from Nigeria to Cabinda.

Non Timber Uses

Contains some resins or extracts which could pose problems when machining or finishing.

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Wood Identification

Anatomic Description Of Wood

Wood diffuse porous. Occasionally vessels exclusively solitary (over 90%). Tangential diameter of vessel lumina 200 micras or more (large). Vestured pits. Vessels per mm2 less than 6 (rare). Simple perforation plates. Vessel-ray pits similar to intervessel pits Axial parenchyma in marginal or in seemingly marginal bands. Paratracheal axial parenchyma scanty and/or vasicentric. Axial parenchyma aliform. Axial parenchyma confluent. Axial parenchyma storied. Prismatic crystals in short chains in chambered axial parenchy Rays storied. Rays exclusively uniseriate. Homogeneous rays and/or sub-homogeneous rays (all ray cells procumbent). Non-septate fibers. Fibers with simple to minutely bordered pits.

  • Wood Macro Photo Tangential Plane
  • Wood Micro Photo Of Transversal Section


Cites Status


General Wood Description


The sapwood is whitish, it has a thickness of 10 to 20 cm. The heartwood is vivid red sometimes with dark veining, toning down on exposure, it is clearly demarcated.

COLOR INDEX (1=Black, 7=Light yellow,white)



Straight or slightly interlocked, sometimes with an influence on further processing operations.


The texture of the wood is frequently coarse.

Natural Durability

Very durable to decay; without preservative treatment. This species is especially suited for all the uses with risks of permanent or long-lasting humidification. Resistant to termites attack. Heartwood is resistant to Lyctus attacks.

Natural durability index (1= Very high durability, 7=Vey low durability)


Resistance To Impregnation

Moderately easy to treat with a partial penetration of the preservative products.

Wood Physical Properties

Drying Defects

Ease of Drying: Difficult to dry.

Recommended Dry Kiln Schedule


Wood Chemical Properties

Wood Mechanical Properties



Sawing of this species requires powerful equipment.

Rotary Veneer Cutting

Suitable for slicing.

Sliced Veneer

Suitable for slicing.

Blunting Effect

Moderate blunting effect; stellited blades for sawing and carbide tools for machining are advised.


It needs powerful tools for processing. Possible difficulties caused by interlocked grain are reported.


Moderately easy; tools must be cautiously sharpened.


Moderately easy; tools must be cautiously sharpened.




Moderately easy; tools must be cautiously sharpened.


Moderately easy; tools must be cautiously sharpened.


Pre-boring is necessary.


Difficult to glue because of the extracts content.


Easy to perform; it gives good results.


Needs pre-coating.

Steam Bending

This species can be used for steam bending.

Response To Hand Tools

Working with hand tools is difficult.


End Uses Summary

HOUSING GENERAL, beams, joists, boards, flooring, parquet, frames, steps, panelling, fittings, FURNITURE AND CABINETS, luxury furniture, cabinets, PLYWOOD AND VENEER, Decorative veneer, TURNING, ornaments, turned furniture, cutlery, lasts, CONTAINERS, truck bodies, truck flooring, NAVAL CONSTRUCTION, boats, boat hulls, boat deck, port storage, OTHER AND MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, handicrafts

General Housing
  • 10 - Silica in Timbers
  • 11 - Prospect: The wood database
  • 12 - Tropical timbers of the world. Part I-Tropical American Species
  • 13 - Dry kiln schedules for commercial woods. Temperate and tropical. Section III. Latin American (Mexico, Central, and South America) Woods–Conventional Temperatures
  • 14 - Handbook of Hardwoods
  • 15 - Empire Timbers
  • 16 - Woods of the World
  • 17 - Tree Conservation Database
  • 18 - W3TROPICOS Missouri Botanical Garden
  • 19 - Silica in Timbers
Furniture Cabinets
  • 21 - Tropical timbers of the world. Part III-Southeast Asian and Oceanian Species.
Furniture, Luxury
  • 22 - Dry kiln schedules for commercial woods. Temperate and tropical. Section IV-Asian and Oceanian Woods
  • 24 - Empire Timbers
Panels, Veneers
  • 25 - Directory of Timber Trade Malaysia
Decorative veneer
  • 28 - Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries & Forest of Fiji
  • 30 - Embassy of Honduras in Japan
  • 31 - Embassy of Colombia in Japan
Turned Articles
  • 32 - Embassy of Cote d`Ivoire in Japan
Knife Handles
  • 33 - Embassy of Gabon in Japan
  • 34 - Embassy of Indonesia in Japan
Truck Body
  • 53 - Timbers of the New World
Truck Flooring
  • 54 - Bulletin of the Government Forest Experiment Station N.157: Identification of Tropical Woods
  • 55 - Tropical Timber Atlas of Latin America
  • 56 - Manual de Identificación de Especies Forestales de la Subregión Andina.
Boat Hulls
  • 57 - Estadísticas de Aprovechamiento, Exportación y comercialización Nacional de Productos Forestales
Boat Decking
  • 59 - Programa Nacional de uso Sostenible de los Bosques e Incremento a las Exportaciones.
Port Storage
  • 62 - Estudio Tecnológico de Maderas del Perú (Zona Pucallpa) Vol I
  • 66 - Maderas latinoamericanas. VII. Caracteristicas anatomicas. propiedades fisicomecanicas, de secado, y tratabilidad de la madera juvenil de Cordia alliodora (Ruiz & Pav. Oken.)

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