Woods Used in Japanese Go Bowls

Listed in approximate order of value, scarcity, and desirability



Shimakuwa = Mikura Island Mulberry; Mulberry family = Moraceae; Japanese species is Morus alba.


Kuwa = Mountain Mulberry; Mulberry family = Moraceae; Japanese species is Morus alba.


Kurokaki or Kaki = Persimmon; Ebony family = Ebenaceae; Japanese species is Diospyros kaki


Karin = Chinese Quince; Rose family = Rosaceae; Chinese species is Choenomeles sinensis


Sakura = Cherry; Rose family = Rosaceae; Japanese species is Prunus serrulata


Kaya = Nutmeg-yew tree; Yew family = Taxaceae; Japanese species is Torreya nucifera (this is the premier wood for Go boards)


Tochi = Japanese Horse-chestnut; Soapberry family = Sapindaceae; Japanese species is Aesculus turbinata



Keyaki = Zelkova; Elm family = Ulmaceae; Japanese species is Zelkova serrata

Yakusugi = Sugi (formerly Japanese cedar); Cypress family = Cupressaceae; Japanese species is Cryptomeria japonica

Shitan = Rosewood; Legume family = Fabaceae or Leguminosae; a commonly-used species is Dalbergia latifolia


Kusu = Camphor tree; Laurel family = Lauraceae; Japanese species are Cinnamomum camphora and C. japonicum


Kuri = Japanese Chestnut; Chestnut family = Fagaceae; Japanese species is Castanea crenata

Momiji = Smooth Japanese Maple; Maple family = Aceraceae; Japanese species is Acer palmatum

Shin-Kaya (imitation Kaya; literally "new Kaya") = Alaskan White Spruce; Pine family = Pinaceae; species is Picea glauca

Steven Schafersman, CyberComputing Go
Last updated: 2007 December 17