Swartzia rosea Mart. ex Benth.
Tounatea benthamiana (Miq.) Taub.
Tounatea rosea (Mart. ex Benth.) Taub.
Tunatea benthamiana (Miq.) Kuntze
Tunatea rosea (Mart. ex Benth.) Kuntze
Common Name: Wamara
Swartzia benthamiana is a tree with a small crown; it can grow up to 30 metres tall. The straight bole can be flat or somewhat flanged in shape with a few low buttresses. It can be 40 - 50cm in diameter, exceptionally to 70cm and can be unbranched for up to 20 metres[
Reputed to be one of the most beautiful woods of the Amazon Valley, it is commonly harvested from the wild for local use and for export.
The sawdust from wood of plants in this genus can be irritating to mill workers[
S. America - Brazil, Ecuador, the Guyanas.
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A plant of the moist lowland tropics, where it is found at elevations up to 600 metres.
This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria; these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby[
The red latex that is obtained from the trunk is put on a piece of cotton which is then packed into the cavity of a tooth to relieve toothache[
The crushed leaves and bark are decocted and applied to aching teeth[
The plant (part not specified) is used as a sudorific[
A red latex is obtained from the trunk. It is used medicinally[
Heartwood is only found in the largest trees. It varies from a chocolate brown to a pale reddish purple or purplish brown, occasionally marked by dark olive or purplish-brown coloured stripes. The very wide sapwood is white in colour. The texture is very fine; lustre good; the grain generally straight but may be variable; odour or taste is not distinctive in dry wood. The wood is extremely heavy, very dense, hard, compact, very strong, and resilient[
]. It is variously reported as being very difficult to moderately difficult to work with either hand or machine tools, for it is a hard, high-density wood. But there is general agreement that the wood finishes smoothly, turns very satisfactorily (as do many other very dense woods), and polishes well. It takes nails badly and needs preboring for the use of nails or screws[
]. The heartwood is generally reported to be very resistant to decay, but the sapwood, which makes up the bulk of the lumber produced, is not durable. The wood is rated resistant to damage by the dry-wood termite[
]. The heartwood is one of the most attractive woods on the export market, it is used for inlay, walking sticks, bagpipes, parquet flooring, and bows, and is recommended as a substitute for ebony for it polishes to a high lustre. The whitish sapwood is used in some localities for implement frames and spokes of wheels; the heartwood for posts, articles of turnery, furniture, cabinetwork, and heavy and durable construction. The sapwood has been recommended as a substitute for hickory (Carya) for those purposes requiring very strong, tough, and resilient material[
]. The wood should be well fitted for many other uses requiring a heavy, hard wood having high bending and compression strength, abrasion resistance, and durability[
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