By Abhijit Phadke
This article lists the most popular types of Indian teak wood used for making furniture. Apart from these local varieties, there are also several other imported teak wood such as Burma teak, or African teak that is imported into India.
Of all the natural solid wood furniture available in India, teak wood furniture easily holds the no.1 spot in popularity. Teak wood grows naturally in the central and southern states of India, and is farm-cultivated for its timber in most other parts of the country.
It's commonly known as 'Sagwan wood' or 'Saag' in Hindi and many of the other Indian languages. It is said that the word 'teak' itself has originated from the Tamil word 'Tekku'. In Bengali, teak wood is called 'Segun' wood. Its also known by other names such as kayum, taku, saj, saigon in various parts of India.
The local teak wood varieties in India, are known by their place of origin within the country.
Popular Indian teak wood types:
Nilambur teak wood:
It is also known as Malabar teak. Nilambur is a place in the southern-most state of Kerala, in India. Organized teak plantation started there as early as in 1842. There is also a teak museum in Nilambur, which is considered to one of its kind in the world.
Adilabad teak wood:
The district of Adilabad is located on the northern tip of the state of Andhra Pradesh. Adilabad has a forest area of nearly 7000 sq.kms, where teak, bamboo as well as eucalyptus trees are systematically grown. The teak that originates from this region is known as Adilabad teak.
The teak furniture in local furniture shops in Hyderabad is likely to be made from Adilabad teak since the travelling time from Adilabad to Hyderabad is just over 4 hours.
CPT (Central Province) teak wood:
CP teak is produced in the state of Madhya Pradesh, which is located centrally in India. Hence it is also known as Central province teak wood.
Dandeli is a town located in Uttar Kannada (north kanara) district of North Karnataka. Hence its also called as North Kanara teak.
This teak wood originates in the West Godavari and East Godavari districts of Andhra Pradesh state in India.
This wood originates in the hilly town of Konni in the southern state of Kerala, in India. The place is also famous for its elephant cages and rubber plantations.
As the name indicates, the origin of this wood is Mysore in Karnataka. Mysore is well connected to Bangalore, and the travelling time to reach Bangalore is just about 3 hours.
What this means is that most of the teak wood furniture available in local furniture shops in Bangalore city is likely to be made from Mysore teak.
Balharshah is in Chandrapur district of Maharashtra, which has large forest area. It is also known by the name of Ballarpur teak.
Nagpur teak wood:
Place of origin is Nagpur in Maharashtra. This teak wood is quite well-known in India and used a lot for making teak furniture.
The teak obtained from Konkan region. This is usually plantation teak where the trees are cultivated in farms and later harvested for their timber.
Paratwada is located in Amravati district of Maharashtra (which is near the Madhya Pradesh border), and it is just an hours travel away from the famous tourist spot Chikhaldara. Paratwada is one of the biggest suppliers of teak wood in Asia.
Other than using these well-known Indian teak wood types for making furniture, several other species of teak wood are also imported into India.
The most famous imported teak wood is Burma teak (also called Myanmar teak), which has a rich golden brown colour, and straight grain pattern. Myanmar accounts for almost 1/3rd of the total teak production in the world.
African and South American teaks such as Ghana teak, Columbiana teak and others, are also used for making furniture.
Teak wood from other South Asian countries such as Indonesia (Java teak), Thailand, and Malaysia are also well-known in the Indian furniture market.