FSC® 100% Pau rosa

Pau rosa (Bobgunnia madagascariensis) is a wonderful, mostly red coloured hardwood that shares many characteristics with rosewood / Dalbergia species such as cocobolo.

It has a similar density, shares many working characteristics and, like true rosewoods, finishes beautifully. Some pieces show rainbow-like range of colours like Brazilian tulipwood.


  • Flooring Parquet  Flooring Parquet
  • Guitars and other Stringed Instruments  Guitars and other Stringed Instruments
  • Household Products  Household Products
  • Knives  Knives
  • Turning  Turning
  • Woodwind  Woodwind

The species was formerly classified as Swartzia madagascariensis but was reclassified recently into its own genus, Bobgunnia, along with Bobgunnia fistuloides from West Africa.

Other names: Msekeseke (Swahili), Snake bean tree

Uses: In East Africa, Pau Rosa is highly prized by Makonde carvers alongside African blackwood. In international markets, its high resonance makes it an excellent tonewood for guitars and other instruments. Also, being very dense and very hard it's used for a variety of products including tool handles, knife handles, kitchen ware, sporting goods and wood turning.

Average dried weight: 1000-1100kg/m3 at 12% MC

Janka hardness: 2,940 lbf (13,080 N)