open main page for all woods          open page 2 for articles


Brownea macrophylla
(and possibly other Brownea spp.)

Brownea macrophylla and (possibly) other Brownea species of the family Fabaceae (syn. Leguminosae) the legume, pea, or bean family. Native to Ecuador.

A very heavy, dense wood from Ecuador. This is a hard, heavy wood and it has small pores so will take a high natural polish.

I've seen somewhat sleazy vendors (mostly in the flooring industry) list this as "monterillo rosewood" which is just ridiculous.

my samples:
NOTE: these pics were all taken in very bright incandescent lighting ("soft white" at 2700K)
colors will vary under other lighting conditions

both sides of a sample plank of monterillo / Brownea macrophylla --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by David Clark whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site. The vendor of this sample had the common name as "louro preto" but I am pretty confident that that is NOT a valid common name for this species. This vendor is not completely reliable regarding names.

end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above

END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above


two planks

both sides of a plank

plank and end grain

end grain closeup and END GRAIN UPDATE of the piece directly above

plank and end grain

end grain closeup of the piece directly above

3 planks

2 planks --- color has too much orange. A smaller piece directly below, cut from the top plank, shows the color correctly.

both sides of a small plank of monterillo / Brownea spp. --- HUGE enlargements are present. This was cut from the top plank of the two directly above

end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above

END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above

From one of the larger planks on this page, I made this "formal sample" sized piece to give to a friend. HUGE enlargements are present.

end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above

END GRAIN UPDATE from directly above

web pics:

image of pen blanks, moistened for the pic, provided by Dave Cumming, whom I thank.

pen blanks


planks listed as monterillo "rosewood" by a vendor who apparently will call ANYTHING "rosewood" if it will help them get a sale. This is the kind of internet sleaziness that I really hate.

all of the planks below are from the same vendor --- the wide variety of color and grain pattern is apparently correct, although I do note that I have bought several planks from him and all of them are darker than most of what's should here, and none of them has any red/orange, just variagated black and brown. The vendor is not dishonest, he just sells too much to have time to do color-corrected pics.

planks, all from the same vendor

planks, all from the same vendor but in two batches taken about a year apart so presumably two batches of lumber. HUGE enlargements are present.

these three were pulled from the set directly above to emphasize what is apparently ambrose beetle attacks which, unlike in light-colored wood such as maple leave a dark streak, have, in this dark wood, left light streaks

planks, all from the same vendor

planks and a closeup --- these are from the same vendor as the batch directly above

another plank from the same vendor as those above --- he tells me that this cut up plank is the only one out of a large batch that had this "marblewood" look. I would have bought it, but he was charging something like $50/BF for this particular piece and I just didn't think it was worth that much, unique or not.

these planks are from a vendor who sometimes lists this wood as jacarando pardo and sometimes as monterillo. I cannot conflate these two names, and the wood looks a lot like the other pics on EACH of those pages, so when he lists it as monterillo, so do I and when he lists it as jacaranda pardo, so do I

monterillo bowls by Bryan Nelson (NelsonWood). Bryan fine-polishes his bowls with 1200 or even higher grit sandpaper while they are spinning at high speed on the lathe and then finishes them there with a friction polish of his own devising, thus achieving a shine and color vibrancy that is beautiful to behold, although these bowls are definitely brighter than any redwood I have experienced. Bryan's pics often show exceptionally vibrant colors.

Several years ago, Dave Havercamp contacted me to see if I could help with the ID of a wood he was using to make a rocking chair. I told him I thought it was monterillo and I put the pics on this page up to now. BUT ... I now realize that monterillo has winged aliform parenchyma and his wood does not, and his wood is more grainy than monterillo, so this is NOT monterillo after all and my ID was mistaken. I have not yet figured out what it is, so am leaving the pics here for now.

small planks and a closeup of one of them. These pics and the ones directly below were provided by Dave Havercamp, whom I thank. Dave is also the creator of the fabulous rocking chair at the bottom of the page

end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above

rocking chair by Dave Havercamp with a closeup of the seat; the seat pic was taken before the finishing agent was applied and the enlargements of it really show the grain and color variations. Check out the 2nd enlargement on the chair itself --- Dave's workmanship and finishing skills are just outstanding.

closeups of the front and back of the top rail before the finish was applied