African Walnut

Wood type Hardwood
Environmental Not listed in CITES. Believed available from well-managed sources. Check certification status with suppliers.
Introduction African walnut is not a true walnut; it belongs to the mahogany family and is very similar in many respects to African mahogany.
Distribution Nigeria, Ghana, Cameroons, Zaire, Gabon.
The Tree It is a tall tree reaching 36m to 39m in height, 1.2m diameter having a cylindrical bole with a small buttressed or fluted base. Frequently has a clean bole of 18m or more.
The Timber It is of a golden brown colour, marked with black streaks (caused by secretory tissue or ‘gum lines’), which have given it the name ‘walnut’. When planed the surface is distinctly lustrous The sapwood is narrow, buff or light brown in colour and normally sharply defined from the heartwood, although a narrow transitional area is sometimes seen. It has usually interlocked grain, giving a marked ‘stripe’ when cut on the quarter. It averages about 560 kg/m3 when dried.
Drying Its drying properties are fairly good, although existing shakes may extend slightly and some distortion occur.
Strength For its weight the strength of the timber is good, and is equal to American black walnut in hardness and in compression along the grain.
Working Qualities Medium – Medium
Durability Slightly durable
Treatability Extremely difficult
(mean, Kg/m³)
DensityText Denisty can vary by 20% or more
Texture Variable
Availability Regular
Price Medium
Use(s) Exterior joinery, Furniture
Colour(s) Yellow brown (sometimes with dark streaks)


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