Ipé, the common name for the lapacho group of the genus Tabebuia, consists of about 20 species of trees and occurs in practically every Latin America country except Chile.
Other commonly used names are guayacan and lapacho. The sapwood is relatively wide, yellowish gray or gray-brown and sharply differentiated from heartwood, which is light to dark olive brown. The texture is fine to medium. The grain is straight to very irregular and often narrowly interlocked. Ipé trees grow to 130 feet tall (30 to 40 meters) with average tree trunk of 2 to 4 feet in diameter (0.6 to 1.2 meters).
The wood is very heavy and averages about 1,025 kg/m 3 (64 lb/ft 3 ) at 12% moisture content. Thoroughly air-dried heartwood specimens generally sink in water.
Because of its high density and hardness, ipé is moderately difficult to machine but glassy smooth surfaces can be produced. In the air-dried condition, it is comparable with greenheart (Chlorocardium rodiei). Hardness is two to three times that of white oak (Quercus alba) or keruing (Diptero-carpus). The wood is highly resistant to decay and insects including both subterranean and dry-wood termites, but susceptible to marine borer attack. The heartwood is impermeable but the sapwood can be readily treated with preservatives. Ipé wood's primary uses are decking or flooring, boards for furniture or for general use as well.
Liberty Cedar is one of the leading quality Ipé wood suppliers in Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Long Island, New York, and Connecticut region. Visit Liberty Cedar and see our best quality Ipé wood supplies.
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