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Purple Heart Wood Explained. All Questions Answered.


Purple Heart is a premium quality, beautifully colored hardwood. Purple Heart Wood is formerly known as Peltogyne, a native plant from South America and Central America.

In this article we cover the most commonly asked questions about Purple Heart wood.

Is Purple Heart A Hardwood Or Softwood?

Purple Heart is a premium quality, beautifully colored hardwood. Purple Heart Wood is formerly known as Peltogyne, a native plant from South America and Central America. It is found over a large area and space from Brazil to Mexico. These trees can grow as much as 50m in height with a trunk of 1.5m in diameter.

This tree gives a variety of options. They can bare fruit, they have beautiful flowers to display, and the timber is tough to craft but not impossible. Purple Heart is one of the more formidable hardwood species. It is a durable and stable form of wood.

This hardwood gains its value from the beautiful purple color but if kept less exposed to UV light makes it turn dark brownish-red. Whichever color you like, it is a resistant and durable hardwood.

Can Purple Heartwood Be Used For Cutting Boards?

Purple Heart is used all over the world as an exotic wood for cutting boards and many other applications. Although mainly used as lumber for houses, flooring, and furniture, it can be used for other purposes like cutting boards and shelves.

There is a big market out there that uses Purple Heart wood for cutting boards. Even though you have the option to buy lumber and design your own Purple Heart wood cutting board. I believe you should opt for purchasing ready-made products where Purple Heart is concerned.

The wood is tough to craft, and many regular woodworkers fail to make a good-looking product out of Purple Heart. The wood is safe for use and doesn’t cause any allergies or reactions when used for a cutting board. The process of crafting the wood can be challenging, and the coloring is harsh to pull off.

What Wood Goes Well With Purple Heart?

Purple Heart is a genuinely unique colored wood for hardwoods; hence it can be challenging to combine. The wood in its final coloring is one hard contrast to pull off. Many people try different woods and colors with Purple Heart such as black, red, blue, yellow, etc. The color combination all depends upon your grain and how textured you want it. With different coloring stages, you can craft many desired products, and they can all be beautiful.

I believe that Purple Heart in its end grain purple color is complimented beautifully with yellow heartwood. The yellow heart is a neo-satin wood that can be found in different shades of yellow to gold. It is a lighter wood, and when combined with Purple Heart, the combining shades are beautiful. Although you can opt for many kinds of wood depending on your preference yellow heart fits beautifully with the Purple Heart, and I recommend the combo.

Is Purple Heart Wood endangered?

Purple heart wood isn’t endangered as a plant species; it is found across South America in large parts of the rainforests.

Purple heart wood isn’t listed on CITES appendices or on the IUCN red list of threatened species, which means it isn’t endangered or decreasing at a rapid rate. The problem and underlying misconception are that people believe it to be scarce and endangered because of its availability.

The supply is limited, considering it is found in a minimal region of the world. The wood is chopped across the forests, and the positive thing about it is it can grow back fast, so chopping it isn’t a worry. A whole lot of the trees can grow back rapidly and consistently.

Is Purple Heart Wood Expensive?

All around the world, Purple Heartwood differs in prices because of the import-export charges and delivery charges. The wood itself is a moderate priced wood for good quality hardwood use. It’s crafting and designing are difficult; hence there might be charges for that as well if you aren’t doing it yourself, but the beautiful touch and color of the wood is worth the price.

Purple Heart wood is available to a variety of people in a variety of markets. It is a comparatively expensive wood, but it can be found at different rates from different places because of the increasing availability. Purple heart wood is a rare and exotic wood that originates only in South America. This is mainly one of the reasons it’s expensive.

Is Purple Heart Toxic to Dogs?

It is commonly agreed that the wood can also be a cause of allergies and reactions in dogs. Although not all dogs are affected by the touch of the wood, some are affected. So, if you want to get yourself some purple wood and have a pet, you should look into further details of buying and use.

Although severe reactions to purple heartwood are incredibly uncommon, some cases argue that the wood does affect some people but not everyone. The wood can be the cause of nausea or eye and skin irritability. You should look into the wood’s medical details and if you have any allergens that might be activated by it.

Is Purple Heart Sustainable?

The purple heartwood is a very sustainable plant, and the tree can withstand a lot of strong impacts. The wood is a type of hardwood, so it cannot be broken easily. The wood resists water scratches, humidity, etc.

It is best for furniture and floors because of its toughness. The wood is plentiful also, although available in a limited area across South America. It is still very rapid in its growth and doesn’t take a lot of time to grow into a fully matured tree.

So, the sustainability of purple heartwood isn’t a problem. Original purple heartwood can resist severe temperatures and rugged climates.

Is the Purple Heart Poisonous?

The plant is not known to be any kind of dangerous, and although it might cause some reactions in specific people and animals, it isn’t poisonous. The responses and allergies or skin irritability are due to a lot of reasons, such as an animal or human having active allergens.

Kevin Nelson

I will always have a special place in my heart for woodworking. I have such fond memories working on projects with my parents on the weekends in the garage growing up. We built tables, shelves, a backyard shed, 10' base for a water slide into the pool, 2 story fort playhouse with a fire pole, and so much more. This woodworking blog allows me to write helpful articles so others can enjoy woodworking as much as we have.

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