Pachylobus peruvianus Loes.
Common Name: Copal
Copal is an evergreen tree growing up to 20 metres tall.
The tree is harvested from the wild for its wood, which is used locally and also traded.
S. America - northern Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela.
Wet lowland forest on sites not subject to inundation at elevations below 500 metres[
]. Open woods at elevations around 700 metres[
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A dioecious species, both male and female forms need to be grown if fruit and seed are required.
]. The fruit of this species is a blackish drupe up to 25mm long and 15mm wide[
The flesh of the fruits in this genus usually adheres very strongly to the seed. When placed in hot (but not boiling) water at around 60 - 85°c the fruit softens and swells and all the flesh then slides easily off the seed[
The heartwood is cream white to pinkish white; it is not clearly demarcated from the 3 - 8cm wide band of greyish white sapwood. The texture is fine; the grain irregular and interlocked. The wood is light in weight, soft to moderately hard; it is not durable, being susceptible to fungi, dry wood borers and termites. The wood seasons normally, with only a slight risk of checking or distortion; once dry it is moderately stable in service. The fairly high silica content of the wood has a high blunting effect, stellite-tipped and tungsten carbide tools are recommended; there are also difficulties caused by the highly interlocked grain; nailing and screwing are good; gluing is correct; finishing is good. The wood is used for purposes such as interior joinery and panelling, boxes and crates, cheaper furniture, shingles and veneer[
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