Tali a.k.a “African Ipe”

Botanical NameErythrophleum suaveolens

Janka Hardness: 2920 – 2x harder than Hard Maple

Appearance: Whitish sapwood is clearly demarcated. Heartwood, which darkens upon exposure, typically ranges from yellowish brown to reddish brown. That said, because of the various growing conditions, there may be variations in color. That explains the existence of Black Tali. Coarse texture, highly interlocked grain. Often waxy feel and appearance.

Growing conditions of Tali could impact its color: a black shade of Tali (left) and Tali in its more “regular” color (right).

Properties: Tali is very photosensitive and will thus darken after continued exposure to light. As durable as the more widely-known Ipe. Very stable, hard and resistant to fungi and termite.

Finishing: Waxy appearance can make it challenging, but Tali responds well.

Applications: Tali is extremely popular in Europe for decking, marine construction, bridge building and boat building. It is also used for heavy-duty hydraulic applications, flooring, and sound barriers.