Brazilian Cherry


Common Names
Jatoba, Brazilian Cherry
Scientific Name
Hymenaea oblongifolia
Central America, southern Mexico, northern South America, and the West Indies
Heartwood varies from a light orangish brown to a darker reddish brown, sometimes with contrasting darker grayish brown streaks. Color tends darken upon exposure to light. Sapwood is a light grayish yellow, clearly demarcated from the heartwood. Grain is typically interlocked, with a medium to coarse texture. Good natural luster. Endgrain: Diffuse-porous; large pores, very few; solitary and radial multiples of 2-3; mineral deposits (dark brown) occasionally present; parenchyma vasicentric, aliform (lozenge or winged), confluent, and marginal; narrow to medium rays, normal spacing.
Avg. Dried Weight
57 lbs/ft3 (910 kg/m3)
Janka Hardness
2690 lbf
Modulus of Rupture
22,510 lbf/in2 (155.2 MPa)
Elastic Modulus
2,745,000 lbf/in2 (18.93 GPa)
Crushing Strength
11,780 lbf/in2 (81.2 MPa)
Radial: 4.2%, Tangential: 8.0%, Volumetric: 12.1%, T/R Ratio: 1.9
Jatoba is rated as being very durable in regards to rot resistance, and is also resistant to termites and most other insects. (Though it has been reported to be susceptible to attack from marine borers.)
Jatoba is considered difficult to work with on account of its density and hardness, and has a moderate blunting effect on tool cutters. Jatoba also tends to be difficult to plane without tearout due to its interlocking grain. However, Jatoba glues, stains, turns, and finishes well. Responds well to steam-bending.

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