Latin Name: Fraxinus mandshurica (sometimes spelled mandschurica)
Common Name(s): Tamo Ash, Japanese Ash, Manchurian Ash
Sources: Northern Asia (China, Korea, Japan, and Russia)

Characteristics

The heartwood is a light to medium brown color. Sapwood can be very wide, and tends to be a beige or light brown; not always clearly or sharply demarcated from heartwood. Deeply figured grain patterns are possible, sometimes called “peanut” figure, so called because the rotary-sliced veneer has an almost three-dimensional patterning that looks like peanut shells.

Grain/ Texture

Grain is generally straight, though portions with wild/figured grain are commonly sold. With a coarse uneven texture.

Workability

Produces good results with hand or machine tools. Glues, stains, and finishes well.

Uses

Veneer, musical instruments (drum shells and guitars), fine furniture, marquetry, and other small speciality wood items.

Availability

Sold almost exclusively as veneer, and nearly always with figured grain of some sort. Reportedly quite rare, and in limited supply; most veneer is exported from Japan. Prices are high for an imported veneer and are linked to the degree of figure in the grain: higher figure means higher prices.