Kiri timber products & markets

Kiri trees provide a fast-growing high quality light-weight light-coloured plantation-grown hardwood with attractive grain pattern and processing characteristics.  


The timber has a long history and tradition of use in China and Japan.

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Large end-dimension pieces can provide strength without excess weight. However, generally speaking, Paulownia should not be regarded as a structural timber, and as such it will not be in competition with eucalypt or pine. The surface is also relatively soft, and may require lacquer finishes in some end-uses.  In-ground or external durability is low to moderate for timber from young fast grown trees without sealants or moisture barriers. Experience suggests that termites are not particularly attracted to the wood.

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A particular advantage of Kiri timber is the ease with which it can be rapidly dried with minimal warping, cracking, and shrinkage (less than 0.2%), and it's high stability  once dry.  Hence it can be used for cabinet work without danger of distortion or need for a long seasoning period.  The close-grained light-coloured timber is easy to work with; it takes a stain easily, will plane or sand to a glossy satin sheen finish with a minimum of effort, cuts and finishes smoothly in lathe-turning, can be readily steam-bent, and is good for carving. 

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Specific target markets for Kiri include furniture, interior mouldings and veneers, where appearance is more important than strength.  Kiri timber can be sawn and dressed for interior panels, wallboard, mouldings, furniture, toys/craft, or rotary peeled or sliced for veneer use as cores or attractive surface finish on reconstituted products, and marine and other specialty applications.  Pulpwood and MDF board production are technically feasible based on wood parameters, however only residues or by-products from higher value products are likely to be used for these purposes as they are less financially attractive than the timber/veneer alternative under current market and pricing conditions.

A detailed description of wood properties and markets is available here. [link: conference paper]

Contact us for carbon storage and bioenergy feasibility information

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