Lysiloma bahamensis and Lysiloma latisiliquum (syn. lysiloma latisiliqua)
Lysiloma bahamensis and Lysiloma latisiliquum (syn. lysiloma latisiliqua) of the family Fabaceae (syn. Leguminosae) the legume, pea, or bean family. The name is more correctly, and commonly, spelled with an apostrophy: "t'zalam" but some of my software doesn't like the apostrophy so I leave it out.
Primarily a Mexican wood, this medium density wood is fairly fine-textured with a straight open grain and colors that range from light brown to chocolate, sometimes with streaks of red or brown. It's easy to work and takes a fairly high natural polish.
my samples: NOTE: these pics were all taken in very bright incandescent lighting ("soft white" at 2700K) colors will vary under other lighting conditions
both sides of a sample plank of tzalam / Lysiloma latisiliquum --- HUGE enlargements are present. This sample was loaned to me by Mark Peet whom I thank for this and other contributions to the site. Note that the first face was sanded to 240 grit and the second face was not and this accounts for minor differences in color between the two (the second face still has a very light patina) and the better resolution of the detail characteristics as seen in the first one.
end grain and end grain closeup of the piece directly above
NOT a raw wood color flooring sample with a hard shiny finish that deepens and enriches the color. This was listed as "Caribbean walnut" which is just a made-up name in the flooring trade, which also used the made-up names "Mayan" and "Aztec" walnut for tzalam; outside of the flooring industry, none of these names exist.
the same piece as directly above but with the finish sanded off