East Indian Rosewood

Botanical Name

Dalbergia latifolia roxb

Other Common Names

Shisham, Indian Rosewood, Bombay Blackwood


Indian peninsula scattered in the dry deciduous forests

The Tree

On favorable sites, trees reach a height of 100 feet, with clear, cylindrical boles 35 to 50 feet in length; diameters may reach 5 feet, more often 2.5 feet or less.


Heartwood varying in color from golden brown to dark purple brown with darker streaks giving an attractive figure; sapwood yellowish often with purplish tinge, sharply demarcated.


Grain narrowly interlocked; texture moderately coarse; luster low; fragrant when freshly cut but without distinctive odor or taste when seasoned.

Working Properties

Moderately difficult to work with hand and machine tools because of the high density; chalky deposits, if present, will dull cutters; glues well and takes an excellent finish.


Fine furniture and cabinetwork, musical instruments, turnery.


Likely to be quite expensive, its price should be comparable to other similar rosewoods.