What Is Acacia Hardwood?

acacia-hardwood Credit: Guitarist Magazine/Future/Getty Images

Acacia hardwood is a thick, dense byproduct of a species of tree or shrub in the Acacia family. The global Acacia family contains over 100 species of plants and trees that thrive in warm, tropical climates of Asia, Australia and Africa. These species differ in appearance, but share a universal characteristic of slow growth, which accounts for their unusually thick and solid wood.

Acacia wood proves suitable for use in many popular products because of its density and sturdiness. Once harvested, woodcarvers and furniture makers refine the heartwood of Acacia species for use in commercial products. The heartwood proves especially valuable and attractive, as its thick wood resists decay and disease, and accepts polish and lacquer readily, adopting a shiny finish upon completion of the refinement process.

Once treated, Acacia hardwood transforms into many familiar products. Industrial uses of acacia wood include paper, cardboard and paper bags. It also creates wood chips and pellets for use as energy. Acacia wood appears in residential furniture, such as chairs, tables and cabinets. Acacia sees use in carrying and transporting goods and products, as it commonly forms crates and shipping boxes. Although used extensively for consumer products, Acacia species grow and reproduce quickly. This trait helps sustain a large global population, and keeps Acacia species off the global threatened and endangered species list.