Brysonima coriacea var. spicata and Brysonima spp.
Family: Malpighiaceae
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Other Common Names: Golden spoon (British West Indies), Maricao (Puerto Rico), Chnagugo (Mexico), Chaparro (Colombia), Candelo (Venezuela), Kanoabali (Guyana), Chupicara (Peru), Murici (Brazil).


Distribution: Throughout West Indies, Central America, Colombia, the Guianas, Peru, Bolivia, and Brazil. Common in secondary forests and frequently on lands degraded by farming.


The Tree: Generally may reach a height of 100 to 120 ft, with trunk diameters up to 3 ft. Straight cylindrical bole free of buttresses, and clear to 60 to 70 ft.


The Wood:

General Characteristics: Heartwood pale to dark reddish brown with a purplish cast, sometimes with a grayish tint. Gray to reddish-brown sapwood somewhat distinct from heartwood. Grain mostly straight or slightly interlocked; texture moderately fine; medium luster; without distinctive odor or taste.


Weight: Basic specific gravity (ovendry weight/green volume) 0.61; air-dry density 46 pcf.


Mechanical Properties: (2-cm. standard.)


Moisture content   Bending strength   Modulus of elasticity   Maximum crushing strength

            (%)                  (Psi)                            (1,000 psi)                   (Psi)

Green (42)                   12,200                         1,570                           5.800

12%                             18,000                         1,950                           9,750


Janka side hardness 1,140 lb when green and 1,530 lb for air-dry wood. Forest Products Lab oratory toughness reported to be 132 in.-lb at 12% moisture content (5/8-in. specimen).


Drying and Shrinkage: The wood air-seasons fairly well, drying at a rather slow to moderate rate; end and surface checking are slight but some tendency to warp. Kiln schedule T6-D2 is suggested for 4/4 stock and T3-D1 for 8/4. Shrinkage green to ovendry: radial 4.0%; tangential 8.2%; volumetric 12.2%.


Working Properties: The wood works fairly easily with both hand and power tools; good to excellent surfaces are produced in all operations. Proper size lead holes must be prebored before screws are driven or the wood splits rather badly.


Durability: The wood is very susceptible to dry-wood termites and other wood-destroying insects, only slightly resistant to decay fungi; no appreciable resistance to marine borers. 


Preservation: Heartwood and sapwood are bother moderately resistant to impregnation; good end penetration, however, suggests favorable response to incising.


Uses: General carpentry, furniture and cabinet work, flooring, and turnery. It has been suggested for plywood and veneer.


Additional Reading:: (22), (24), (42), (45)

22.  Farmer, R.H. (Editor). 1972. Handbook of hardwoods. H.M. Stationery Office. London.

24.  Food and Agriculture Organization. 1970. Estudio de preinversi—n para el desarrollo forestal de la Guyana Venezolana. Informe final. Tomo III. Las maderas del area del proyecto. FAO Report FAO/SF:82 VEN 5. Rome.

42.  Lavers, G>M> 1969. The strength properties of timeber. For. Prod. Res. Bull. No 50. H.M> Stationery Office.  London.

45.  Longwood, F.R. 1961. Puerto Rican woods: Their machingin, seasoning, and related characteristics. Agricutlture Handbook No. 205. U.S. Department of Agriculture.


From: Chudnoff, Martin. 1984. Tropical Timbers of the World. USDA Forest Service. Ag. Handbook No. 607.