Palm Wood: Coconut Palm Tree Wood Uses, Properties, Pros, and Cons
There are 2 species of palms from different genera. Black palm, also known as Palmyra Palm, is a palm distribution of Tropical Asia and Africa.
The black palm tree is 65-100 feet tall and 2-3 feet trunk diameter.
And then there is the Red palm (Coconut Palm) which has the same tree tall as the Black palm, but a different distribution. Red palm distribution is throughout the tropics in the world.
What is palm wood?
Palm is a wood with a unique appearance and is different from most woods.
Palmwood grains are very straight and embedded in the body of the wood, which is brown (black palm) and reddish light brown (red palm).
The texture of palm wood is uneven and may be rough after cutting due to embedded grains that sometimes stand out.
Palm wood is reported to be durable against decay but is susceptible to insect attack.
The properties of palm wood
It is neither hardwood nor softwood. Palm belongs to monocots and varies in hardness, strength, and weight.
Although durable in resistance to rot, palms are susceptible to insect attack. This makes the palm not recommended for outdoor use or ground contact.
Both types of palm are quite difficult to work with, including using machines. Be careful in the working process is very important to do.
Palm wood advantages and disadvantages
Resistant to rot: You can use palm for some things that require resistance to rot.
So, no need to worry about rot. Furniture, boatbuilding, and others can be made from black palm or red palm.
It seems like it would be pretty good to make some furniture from this wood. But we think palms can also be used for light construction, especially red palms.
This will be a solid and durable wood because it’s resistant to rot.
Moderately priced: Palm is usually from the fruit for cooking oil, but wood is also quite popular in the tropics.
It’s a tree that grows quite slowly, although the red palm is available throughout the world’s tropics.
That’s why red palm is not in the low price range but in the moderate price range. However, it may be cheaper if the wood is domestic, not imported.
Susceptible to insect attack: While it’s resistant to rot, it doesn’t make the palm durable Because this wood is vulnerable to it.
This makes it not recommended for outdoor use, ground contact, or any other use prone to being a breeding ground for insects.
Choose the right use of palm, indoors such as furniture, or something else. But you can also try several ways to make the wood durable against insect attacks.
Workability: Palm tends to be quite difficult to work with hand tools or machines. The grain it has is sometimes brittle or comes out.
The use of quality and sharp tools is necessary to reduce the problem. Sand it to make it smoother, but it seems like you need a hardener or sanding sealer first.
Although it’s quite difficult to work, it will produce a reliable product with various uses. You can use this for some wooden objects.
Palmwood for furniture
It seems like palm furniture is pretty good to have, even if the appearance is not good enough. However, if you do some excellent work, palm furniture will be made well.
Although it seems like a thicker paint is needed to disguise the palm grain, which looks less attractive, We think only black palm wood is good for this. But it seems that both are commonly used for furniture.
Palmwood for flooring
Black and Red palms are also commonly used for flooring, although we think it takes work wood longer and better for it.
Palm grains can be a problem for your feet if you don’t smooth them properly because it can hurt the soles of your feet.
You can cover it with veneer to cover the raised palm grains that are harmful to the soil. That’s even better, including in its appearance, which can look good.
Palm wood for boatbuilding
You can use black palm wood for boatbuilding. It seems like this wood is pretty good for that. Durability against decay is one of the significant advantages of boatbuilding.
Another plus may be in favor of this wood for that. The color tends to be brown, which is pretty good, though the red palm wood is nice.
However, you don’t know whether red palm wood is also good for boatbuilding or not.
Palmwood for walking sticks
You can also use both types of palms for walking sticks. It seems like almost any type of wood is good enough for that.
The reason may be that this wood is quite sturdy and strong enough to support the body well.
Fine work wood with proper smoothing is a must. It can provide comfort when in use, especially for those who use it regularly.
Palmwood for knife and tool handles
Another common use you can choose is knife and tool handles. Both types of palm wood seem to be widely used for that.
It’s very comfortable to use and great for supporting the tools it has on it.
Do the woodworking properly, carve it to make it look more beautiful, and attach it to the knife or tool you want to use.
Don’t forget to paint it so that the appearance of the palm wood is not visible.
Palmwood for rafters
This wood is excellent for that and may be used a lot in the tropics. Resistant to rot is a good reason, even if it’s a humid place.
But it seems like insects could be a problem there, as the wood is susceptible to it. Don’t forget to dry the wood for a few days before using it.
Palmwood for turned objects
At first, we thought palm wood was terrible enough for turned objects.
Because this wood has a different grain, and it can come out. However, our sources of information say that palm woods are commonly used for this.
After that, we thought the same thing, and it seems like it’s perfect to create some turned objects. However, it looks like it has to do a few things to make it easier to work.
Palmwood for canoes
Seems like making canoes out of palm wood would be pretty good.
It can be canoes that are resistant to rot. Several properties of palm wood also make it even more viable. However, only red palm wood is good for this.
We think the black palm wood color is not suitable for this. Maybe that’s a ridiculous reason, so please find another good reason.
Palmwood for rafts
For almost the same reason as for canoes, red palm wood is also commonly used for rafts.
This wood decay resistance is indeed good for water use because it seems like it won’t rot quickly.
Perhaps another reason that makes this wood commonly used for rafts, like the color or others.
Palmwood for carvings
The last common use you can choose is for carvings. Some properties, such as hardness, strength, and weight, might be a good reason.
Only red palm wood is commonly used for this. We don’t know if black wood is good or not. However, it seems pretty good, although the quality may be different.
Red palm wood can be used as an alternative for carvings Because it seems that the quality of this wood for carvings is still below that of basswood, aspen, and butternut wood.