Panga Panga is the first cousin to Africa’s more popular and well-known exotic, Wenge (with both trees being of the Millettia genus) — sharing a similar large pored, course texture, and presenting some of the same challenges when working. It is generally a bit lighter colored, with heartwood ranging from the lighter to darkers sides of medium brown, with dark brown to black streaks and/or highlighted grain lines. Darker examples can be easily confused with Wenge, and they have been known to turn almost black as they age.
Sustainability: Not listed in the CITES Appendices or on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
Common Uses: Hardwood flooring, veneer, paneling, trim, fine furniture, musical instruments, turnings and small specialty items.
Comments: If someone in the US were to take possession of this wood and resell it as Wenge, it certainly wouldn’t be the first time. Panga Panga is more well known on the international market than in the US, and it remains a popular (and expensive) choice for parquee flooring throughout the UK and Europe.
There are the same inflammatory issues associated with its splinters. Sharing these same characteristics and propensities as its notorious cousin, carefully attention and proper precautions should be taken when working and handling it.