Right-Hand Tone Holes.jpg

African Blackwood Conservation


African Blackwood (Dalbergia melanoxylon), also called grenadilla, or mpingo (Swahili), is a hardwood native to eastern Africa. It has unique physical and acoustic properties that make it an excellent wood for musical instruments, and for years it has been the wood out of which we make the majority of our flutes. states, "Although there is historical indication that the species was once quite widespread geographically, in modern times it is only available in commercial quantities in southeastern Tanzania and northern Mozambique. Although it is listed as ‘near threatened’ on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, this assessment has not been updated since 1998, and its current users think its conservation status may be far more precarious than this designation would indicate." 

Here at Olwell Flutes, we donate money to the African Blackwood Conservation project and encourage our customers to do the same. If you would like to make a donation, please visit the