Jan 5, 2009

Parota (Enterolobium cyclocarpum)

Brief write up on Parota written by Mitch Talcove (owner of Tropical Exotic Hardwoods)

Parota is one of the common names for Enterolobium cyclocarpum. It is also known as Raintree, Kelobra or Guanacaste.

The wood has a Koa-like look to it but is a much faster growing species so it has the density somewhere between redwood and mahogany.

I first saw this wood in Mexico in 1968 while hitching a ride to an isolated village called Yelapa aboard a 30 foot dug out canoe with a three cylinder Lister diesel motor hauling sacks of cement.


Parota is a relatively fast growing and plentiful tree and can get pretty big as you can see by these pictures.


A large tree can yield plenty of usable material such as live edge tabletop slabs, cross-cut round slabs, dimensional lumber and more. This makes it a great sustainable option to work with when selecting wood for furniture, tables, etc.


Here is a younger tree with a gorgeous crotch section that will yield numerous large slabs in the future once it is larger.











This wood has been used as a ceiling lid (see above and below), in cabinet doors, casing, furniture, tables, etc. It glues up easily but sanding is a problem as it is somewhat irritating. A mask takes care of the problem.

As mentioned before, Parota is a very popular choice for large live edge tabletops, bartops and other furniture because of it's beautiful golden brown "koa-like"color and grain, consistent availability in large dimensions and unmatched low cost.




One piece slabs are easily found in widths 30 to 50" and lengths up to 12'. Exceptional logs will yield slabs well over 72" in widths in lengths pushing 18-20'!



It's getting almost impossible to obtain true Hawaiian Koa in nearly any dimension (let alone one piece slabs) which makes Parota a great inexpensive alternative without compromising color and grain (see finished examples below)

Parota table by Tassajara Designs

Parota exterior door



 Parota carving by Richard Howell

 Parota desk by Jeff Nilson

 Parota doors by Ben Wheatley

 Parota cross-cut table by Jay Woody

 Parota table by Ben Wheatley

 Parota bartop by woodandsilver.com


Parota kitchen island by Ingrained Custom Woodwork




We always have a healthy supply of Parota slabs, lumber and thick billets that we import directly from our own sawmill in Mexico.

Please feel free to call us directly if Parota interest you and we can try to recommend whether or not it is a good option for your next project.760.268.1080

For more on Parota please visit:
www.tehwoods.com/parota

3 comments:

Glenn Bampton said...

Is Parota strong enough to be used to produce a walking cane? How would you compare it to Lychee for color, weight and strength?

tehwoods said...

Best to use a denser wood for a cane. Lytchee is much denser and would be a better option

Daniel Ouimette said...

Can i use parota for a peppermill ?