Parota wood is commonly known as guanacaste and scientifically known as Enterolobium Cyclocarpum. You may also hear parota referred to as rain tree, caro caro, or elephant ear tree – which refers to its seedpod shape – depending on where you are.
Parota Wood Profile
The parota tree grows primarily in Mexico and Central America and is commonly used in wooden furniture design and projects for its:
- large dimensions
- neutral golden-brown coloring
- distinct grain patterns
- affordable cost, although prices have risen alongside its popularity in recent years.
In particular, parota wood creates unique tables. The heartwood is streaked with honey, reddish and dark brown colors alongside clearly distinct, creamy sapwood. It is also possible to produce parota furniture without any white sapwood for a modern look. Contact us to ask how we can customize your ideal design.
Unique Parota Wood
Parota is particularly desired for its bold, striking wood grain, which resembles Acacia or Koa wood in appearance but with more texture and consistent colouring. However, as the parota tree is a much faster-growing species, the density is lighter, comparable to a redwood or mahogany. This makes it ideal for large furniture or projects.
Parota also has a moderately natural lustre, which we naturally highlight with oils. This allows us to protect the wood and bring out parota’s intricate grains in a much less damaging way than glossy varnishes.
Parota Wood Growth
Parota is a fast-growing tree that can reach enormous heights (20–30m) and widths (1.5–2.5m) in an incredibly short time. This makes it an ideal tree for reforestation and sourcing long wood slabs in an environmentally responsible way. Read what makes the Guanacaste tree the ideal role model for sustainable wood design.
Parota is also notably lighter and less dense than most exotic hardwoods, meaning large slabs of natural wood are lower weights than other imported hardwoods.
FAQs About Parota Wood
- Names: Parota, Guanacaste, Enterolobium Cyclocarpum
- Location: Parota wood is primarily found in Central America and Mexico, as well as some parts of northern South America.
- Color: Parota heartwood is typically light to medium brown, occasionally with a reddish hue or darker streaks of amber brown. Parota’s outer sapwood is a pale yellow and is unique in its clear demarcation from the heartwood.
- Appearance: Parota wood is known for its bold, striking wood grain, similar to Acacia or Koa wood. But it grows much faster, so its texture is in between redwood and mahogany.
- Durability: Parota wood is rated as a very durable wood, with mixed insect resistance (the heartwood is resistant, but the sapwood less so). It is still more resiliant than some other hardwoods, for example, red oak, which is a non-durable wood with poor insect resistance and stains when in contact with water.
- Growth: Parota is a fast-growing tree that is known to reach enormous heights and widths, with large parota wood slabs commonly found.
- Parota tree size: The parota tree can reach average heights of around 65–100ft (20–30m) tall, with trunk diameters growing to approximately 5–8ft (1.5–2.5m) wide. This makes it easier to find large slabs of natural-edge pieces compared to some other woods, for example, cedar reaches a maximum width of 1.2m.
- Average dried weight: Parota is a relatively light exotic hardwood (27 lbs/ft3 or 440 kg/m3), almost half the weight of red and white oak (44–47 lbs/ft3, 700–755 kg/m3).
- Grain and texture: Parota wood usually has a slightly interlocked grain with a textured surface. Parota wood has a moderate natural lustre.
- End-grain: Parota’s diffuse-porous grain – common in tropical trees – creates an even distribution of pores throughout the wood. Parota’s grain is also distinguished by solitary and radial multiples, with narrow to medium rays with side spacing.
- Pricing/availability: Due to parota’s large trunk size, it is easier to sustainably source large parota wood slabs, including live-edge cuts. Due to the lighter size of parota wood, importing or exporting parota slabs or parota furniture can sometimes be cheaper. Although, due to parota’s popularity, it is becoming harder to find large slabs and prices have risen in recent years.
- Sustainability: Parota is a relatively resistant tree, making it common in reforestation projects. Parota is ranked as a highly sustainable resource, and one of the few imported hard words not listed on the CITES Appendices nor on the IUCN list of threatened species.
Sustainable Parota Wood
Because of its fast-growing properties, parota is a highly sustainable harvested species and not listed in the CITES Appendices or on the IUCN list of threatened species. Read more about its sustainability profile.
As Hawaiian Koa becomes harder to find in almost any dimension, Parota wood is an ideal alternative. Parota wood is also typically easier to work and more consistent in grain and colour than other Acacia-like species, such as Suar or Monkey species in southeast Asia.
PAROTAS is a company offering custom wood furniture and projects for hotels, offices, restaurants and residences, working with the striking parota wood from Mexico alongside several types of local and imported woods.
We hand pick each wood piece to ensure top quality, plus work with specialized architects, carpenters, artists and designers to create modern wooden furniture collections. In this way, PAROTAS aims to create a new style of Mexican wood furniture.
All wood used in our wooden furniture pieces is fully certified and sourced from regions where environmental practices are strictly enforced through environmental operations.
Contact PAROTAS to enquire about sizes, prices, and custom designs. PAROTAS also arranges international delivery and exports, providing a door-to-door service.