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Okoume (Aucoumea klaineana)

Okoume is an imported hardwood


The natural distribution of okoume (Aucoumea klaineana) is rather restricted; the species is found only in west-central Africa and Guinea. However, okoume is extensively planted throughout its natural range.


The heartwood is salmon-pink in color, and the narrow sapwood is whitish or pale gray. The wood has a high luster and uniform texture. The texture is slightly coarser than that of birch (Betula). The nondurable heartwood dries readily with little degrade. Sawn lumber is somewhat difficult to machine because of the silica content, but the wood glues, nails, and peels into veneer easily. Okoume offers unusual flexibility in finishing because the color, which is of medium intensity, permits toning to either lighter or darker shades.

Primary Uses

In the United States, okoume is generally used for decorative plywood paneling, general utility plywood, and doors. Other uses include furniture components, joinery, and light construction.