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Granadillo varies somewhat in color, and can be found in red, black and brown variations. The black is much like Morado — a dark brown, usually distinctly striped wood with a straight grain. The red is much like Honduras Rosewood, with a reddish-brown cast and a figured grain, with a fine to medium texture. The sapwood is very pale — almost white. The heartwood is a mix of brilliant colors ranging from deep orange-red with black striping or mottling and streaks that ages to beautiful markings of red, black, purple, yellow and orange when exposed to air. It is very hard, heavy and dense with tight, straight interlocked grain and low luster. This oily wood is slightly pungent and fragrant when worked.
Formal Name: Platymiscium spp.
Other Names: Macacauba, Coyote, Guayacan, Cocobolo, Nicaraguan Rosewood
Granadillo is found in the Pacific region of Central and South America, extending from southwestern Mexico to the Brazilian Amazon region. The trees grow best in the drier uplands and tend to be small in stature.
Granadillo has excellent machining characteristics. It turns nicely and finishes very smoothly, partly because oils in the wood produce a natural polish. The natural oils, however, can make it unsuitable for gluing and may cause adhesion problems with lacquer or urethane finishes. Exposure to the fine dust may produce a rash on the skin resembling a poison ivy rash.
Granadillo is frequently used in fine furniture and cabinetry, including decorative veneers and inlays. It is also popular for flooring, turnings, handles, musical instruments, fine accessories, jewelry, musical instruments and specialty items such as violin bows and billiard cues accents.