Mahogany is a kind of wood—the straight-grained, reddish-brown timber of three tropical hardwooda species of the genus Swietenia, part of the chinaberry family, Meliaceae, indigenous to the Americas. The three species are:
- Honduran or big-leaf mahogany, with a range from Mexico to southern Amazonia in Brazil, the most widespread species of mahogany and the only true mahogany species commercially grown today. Illegal logging and its highly destructive environmental effects, led to the species’ placement in 2003 on Appendix II of Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), the first time that a high-volume, high-value tree was listed on Appendix II.
- West Indian or Cuban mahogany, native to southern Florida and the Caribbean, formerly dominant in the mahogany trade, but not in widespread commercial use since World War II.
- Pacific Coast Mahogany, a small and often twisted mahogany tree limited to seasonally dry forests in Pacific Central America that is of limited commercial utility.