African Mahogany Wood Countertops, Bar Tops, and Butcher Block Countertops
African mahogany is an exotic wood that continues to grow in popularity today.
It ranges from light pinkish brown to a rich reddish brown in color. In addition to its color, it can be aesthetically enhanced by its cut, creating a ribbon or figure effect. With a medium to coarse grain, the wood also polishes well and is highly lustrous.
African mahogany is a tough, robust, and durable wood used in numerous applications. It is a genuine mahogany substitute in that its color, texture, and grain resemble Honduran mahogany.
Khaya is a genus of five tree species native to tropical Africa and Madagascar. The wood is prized for its strength and resistance to termites and borers. In appearance, Khaya is similar to Swietenia, or genuine, mahogany. Both species come from large trees that produce quality lumber.
Moreover, African mahogany is easy to work with, like genuine mahogany. The wood also produces more pronounced ribbon patterns than genuine mahogany when quartersawn. The ribbons interlace each other and shimmer, reflecting the light differently when the wood is viewed from different angles. These features make African mahogany a popular choice for cabinetwork, countertops, furniture, and flooring.
African mahogany does have more interlocked grain than Swietenia, which can result in tear-out and fuzzy surfaces when planed and carved.
Description: African mahogany typically shows a striped figure or ribbon-striping on quartersawn surfaces, which means it was cut from the log, so the rings are perpendicular to the widest side of the board.
The heartwood is creamy white and yellow, and the sapwood isn’t always distinguishable from the heartwood. It stains and polishes well, which is why African mahogany countertops look beautiful in any kitchen. African mahogany can also darken with age, giving your wood a richer appearance over time.
- Alternate Trade Names: Khaya Ivorensis, Akuk, Bandoro, Bisselon, Ogwango
- Origin: Tropical areas of Madagascar and East, Central, and West Africa
- Color: Light pinkish brown to deep reddish brown with a purple cast, creamy white to yellow
- Grain: Straight grain and usually interlocked
- Janka Hardness: 860
- African Mahogany Typically Grows to Be About 110 to 140 Feet (33 to 43 Meters) High
African Mahogany Facts:
African mahogany typically grows about 110 to 140 feet (33 to 43 meters) high. The trunk has a diameter of about 6 feet (1.8 meters). It is typically used for furniture and cabinet making, but you can also use it for interior joinery, boatbuilding, bank, office, and store fixtures.