Common Names: Sinker Cypress, River Recovered Cypress

Scientific Name: Taxodium distichum

Origin: North American rivers

Tree Size: 80-100 ft (24-37 m) tall, 3-5 ft (1-1.5 m) trunk diameter

Average Dried Weight: 32 lbs/ft3 (515 kg/m3)


Color & Appearance:

The color of Sinker Cypress is dependent on where the logs were harvested. Logs harvested in muddy swamps can have a deep olive hue. Logs found on sandy riverbeds can have a red hue and contain gold color.

Grain &Texture: Sinker Cypress has an extremely tight grain and properties that resist insect pests or decay due to a natural oil present in the wood.

Rot Resistance:

Sinker Cypress has outstanding durability and weathering properties. It is also resistant to insect pests. Wood from younger trees are only slightly less durable.


Sinker Cypress works well with both hand tools and machine tools. The wood can have a dulling effect on sharp tools. the wood easily holds nails, glue, paint, and finishing.


Sinker Cypress can have distinct sour odor when worked on.

Allergies and Toxicity:

Pricing & Availability:

Sinker Cypress is rare to find, as it has to be extracted from a riverbed. Once the logs are found and recovered, there is a chance that the boards fall apart after being sawn, which can render the boards useless and unsellable, making the usable wood more expensive.


Sinker Cypress is not listed in the CITES Appendices, and is reported by the IUCN as being a species of least concern.

Common Uses:

Due to its natural resistances, Sinker Cypress is great for any outdoor project.


Wood of the species Dipteryxodorata is usually called Cumaru among woodworkers, but is sometimes referred to as “Brazilian Teak,” especially when used for hardwood flooring. [Note that Brazilian Teak is not related to the wood most commonly called Teak, Tectonagrandis.] Cumaru also can be called by the name “Tonka Bean.” This tree is often cultivated for the vanilla-cinnamon scented seed (tonka bean) that has a chemical compound called coumarin. Cumaru lumber is exceptionally stiff, hard, and strong, which makes it suitable for a variety of applications. It is sometimes substituted for the scarce wood Lignum Vitae. Cumaru heartwood fluoresces under blacklight, allowing it to be distinguished from Ipe.

Size 1-200 Bft 201-300 Bft 301-500 Bft 501+ Bft
4/4  8.50  8  7  6
5/4 9  8.5 8  7.5
6/4  9.5  9  8.5   8
8/4 10  9.5 9  8.5