Agarwood tree: How to grow and distinguish standard bass

Agarwood price

Many people often mistakenly think about the term “Agarwood tree”. But this term is a misnomer. Because what creates agarwood is not an agarwood tree. So what exactly is a tree? There are thousands of questions surrounding this issue. This article will list all the knowledge about what is agarwood? Why is the agarwood bracelet so popular so that readers can equip themselves with the right knowledge?

Table of Contents

I. Introduction of Agarwood tree

1. Definition of Agarwood tree

Agarwood tree, also known as oud or aloeswood tree, is a rare and valuable fragrant wood that is derived from the resinous heartwood of the Aquilaria and Gyrinops trees. These trees are mainly found in the forests of Southeast Asia, particularly in countries such as India, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, and Malaysia.

Agarwood is the fragrant, rotten part formed on the trunk of the Aquilaria tree
Agarwood is the fragrant, rotten part formed on the trunk of the Aquilaria tree

The medium-sized agarwood tree can reach a height of 40 meters and is an evergreen tree. It has smooth, gray bark and a dense canopy of dark green leaves. When the agarwood tree becomes old naturally or becomes afflicted with a mold called Phialophora parasitica, resinous wood is produced. This dark, fragrant resinous wood is widely prized for its usage in incense, religious rites, fragrances, and traditional medicine. The Agarwood tree is regarded as a threatened species and its harvest is closely controlled in many nations due to its scarcity and high demand.

2. Agarwood’s brief history and uses

Because of its distinctive and potent aroma, agarwood has been employed for thousands of years in many different cultures and religions. Ancient civilizations like the Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans employed agarwood for their fragrances, incense, and medicinal treatments.

Agarwood has been employed in traditional Asian medical systems like Ayurveda, Chinese medicine, and Tibetan medicine for ages. It is thought to have a variety of health advantages, such as sedative, anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial properties.

In many civilizations, agarwood is also frequently employed in religious rituals. Agarwood, along with gold and silver, is one of the three most precious materials according to Buddhism. It frequently serves as a symbol of enlightenment and purity in incense and other offerings.

In modern times, agarwood is most commonly used in perfumery, where it is highly prized for its unique and complex aroma. The fragrance of agarwood is often described as woody, spicy, and slightly sweet, with hints of vanilla and floral notes. It is a popular ingredient in high-end fragrances and is also used in aromatherapy and other wellness products.

Read more: Amazing usage of Agarwood

3. Importance of agarwood tree in investment and economy

Agarwood trees are extremely rare and in high demand, making them a significant financial potential. Agarwood is one of the most costly timbers in the world, and since it is so rare, its price has grown dramatically over time.

For individuals who are ready to wait for the tree to grow and produce resinous wood, investing in agarwood trees can be rewarding. Depending on its size, age, and the caliber of the resinous wood it produces, a mature Agarwood tree can be worth several hundred to tens of thousands of dollars.

In addition to the investment opportunities, the Agarwood industry also plays an important role in the economy of many countries. The production and trade of Agarwood products generate significant income and provide employment opportunities for many people in Southeast Asia. The industry also supports the conservation of forests and promotes sustainable forestry practices, which can help preserve biodiversity and protect the environment.

However, the Agarwood industry also faces challenges, including overharvesting, illegal logging, and the threat of extinction for some species of Agarwood trees. It is important for the industry to adopt sustainable practices and for governments to enforce regulations to ensure the long-term viability of the Agarwood trade.

agarwood tree
Agarwood trees play an important role in economic development.

II. How to grow Agarwood trees

1. Climate and soil requirements for growing agarwood tree

A warm, humid climate with lots of rainfall is necessary for agarwood trees. Temperatures between 25°C and 35°C are ideal for their growth in tropical and subtropical locations. Agarwood trees may grow in a variety of soil types, although they favor loamy, sandy, or soils that drain well and are high in organic matter.

2. Steps on how to grow agarwood tree

The following are the general steps for growing agarwood tree:

  • Obtain agarwood seeds or seedlings from a reputable source.
  • Prepare the soil by adding organic matter, such as compost or manure, to improve fertility and drainage.
  • Plant the seeds or seedlings in a location that receives plenty of sunlight.
  • Regularly water the plants, especially during dry spells.
  • Prune the plants to promote healthy growth and shape.
  • Apply fertilizers that are high in nitrogen and potassium to promote healthy growth.
  • Protect the plants from pests and diseases by using natural or chemical means.
  • Inoculate the plants with the fungus responsible for agarwood formation to induce resin production.
There are many steps in growing agarwood trees.

3. How to identify agarwood tree

Medium to large, glossy, dark green evergreen leaves that constitute agarwood trees’ telltale feature. The trees are straight with rough bark, and they have drooping branches covered in clusters of greenish-yellow flowers. When the resin is harvested from mature trees, a distinct scent is released.

4. How to infect agarwood tree

To infect an agarwood tree, the following methods can be used:

  • Wounding the tree by cutting or drilling holes in the trunk or branches.
  • Inoculating the tree with the fungus responsible for agarwood formation.
  • Using chemical inducers that mimic the natural process of tree infection.

5. Agarwood tree maturity

When agarwood trees reach maturity, which can take up to 15-20 years, they begin to produce resin. Yet the age of maturity can differ based on things like location, soil type, and climate.

6. Agarwood yield per tree

The amount of agarwood resin generated by a tree can vary greatly depending on a number of variables, such as the tree’s age, health, and genetics, as well as the infection process and resin quality. A mature agarwood tree typically produces between a few grams and several kilograms of resin per year.

Agarwood yield

III. Investing in Agarwood tree

1. Agarwood tree investment overview

Agarwood tree farming can turn out to be a lucrative business over time. The costs of agarwood have increased as a result of the continually rising demand for agarwood and its byproducts, like incense and essential oils, on a global scale. Despite the lengthy maturation period and unpredictability of resin production, agarwood trees are a potentially profitable investment due to their high costs.

2. Agarwood tree prices and factors affecting them

The prices of agarwood tree can vary widely depending on various factors such as:

  • The quality of the resin produced, with higher quality resins commanding higher prices.
  • The method of infection used to induce resin production, with natural infections producing more valuable resin than induced infections.
  • The geographical location of the trees, with agarwood from certain regions such as Assam and Thailand being more expensive.
  • The rarity of the agarwood, with rarer species or grades being more expensive.
  • The market demand and supply, with limited supply and high demand resulting in higher prices.

3. Agarwood tree farming

Agarwood tree farming involves the cultivation of agarwood trees for their resin. The following are the general steps involved in agarwood tree farming:

  • Obtaining high-quality agarwood seeds or seedlings from a reputable source.
  • Selecting a suitable location that has a warm and humid climate with well-drained soil.
  • Preparing the soil by adding organic matter and nutrients.
  • Planting the seeds or seedlings in rows, with adequate spacing for healthy growth.
  • Watering the plants regularly and providing fertilizers that are high in nitrogen and potassium.
  • Pruning the plants regularly to promote healthy growth and shape.
  • Protecting the trees from pests and diseases using natural or chemical means.
  • Inducing resin production by either wounding the tree or inoculating it with the fungus responsible for agarwood formation.
  • Harvesting the resin when it has matured and reached a desirable quality.
Agarwood tree farming in Vietnam

IV. Distinguishing 4 types of agarwood

The essential oil concentration in the agarwood divides it into Ky Nam, Natural Agarwood, Toc Agarwood and Artificial agarwood . Out of the three, Ky Nam is the most premium, generating the highest economic value.

1. Ky Nam

Ky Nam is the most expensive kind of agarwood, thanks to its extreme scarcity and difficult to find it. This explains why Ky Nam is very uncommon in general public use as its real value can rise to hundreds of thousands of dollars. The injuries on the Aquilaria tree both produce ky Nam and the typical agarwood. However, while their making process is alike, their rareness differs. Ky Nam is made up of significantly more essential oil, which means Ky Nam requires a considerably longer amount of making time. While it takes 1000 Aquilaria trees to locate one tree with agarwood, it may take up to 1000 trees to find one with Ky Nam.

White Ky Nam is valuable because of its rarity.

2. Typical agarwood

The typical agarwood can be found in the mountains of Vietnam; and its rareness is not anywhere near Ky Nam. While Ky Nam is extraordinarily luxurious and hard to find. Its price varies from thousands to tens of thousands of dollars. The typical one usually consists of:

  • Ant-Eyed agarwood: Made by holes created by Ants on an Aquilaria tree.
  • Root agarwood: Found on the root of an Aquilaria tree.
  • Deadly Eye agarwood: Found on the branches of an Aquilaria tree.

The typical products today are usually these three types in which is usually classified into six levels:

  • 1st level: white-wax colored, has the highest value of all levels
  • 2nd level: Buckhead-green colored
  • 3rd level: green-wax colored
  • 4th level: yellow-wax colored
  • 5th level: tiger-striped
  • 6th level: yellow-colored with visible spots of essential oil
The typical agarwood consists of many types
The typical agarwood consists of many types

3. Tram Toc – Toc Agarwood

Toc has relatively little essential oil, often interspersed along the wood grain, so its quality and value are not as much as the typical and KyNam agarwood. Even so, when put in comparison with an artificial one, Toc offers decent, consistent quality while remaining largely affordable, which explains its numerous users. 

Toc comes with many variations, but on the basis, it can be classified into four main groups: Toc Dia, Toc Day, Toc Huong, and Toc Pi.

Toc Agarwood

4. Artificial agarwood with oil pressing technology

One of the least valuable types that can be considered a fake is oil-pressed agarwood. The essential oil will be artificially pressed into the wood, making the wood smell like natural agarwood. People will use the tree trunk to make jewelry, then boil it in a pressure cooker with Agarwood essential oil so that the aroma and the essential oil can penetrate the arms.

Artificial agarwood

V. Distinguish between sinking and floating agarwood

1. Sinking agarwood

Agarwood has a large amount of essential oil (usually more than 25%) and belongs to the highest value. Due to the high oil percent, the agarwood will sink to the bottom when putting in water. The scent of this agarwood is powerful. Compared to the floating one, the sinking gives off a strong smell and has a dark color. In particular, when wearing in hand, there was a heavier weight than other types of agarwood.

Because sinking agarwood can take up to 40 years to sink, it took a long time to discover. Therefore, the value of this type of kind is valuable. It is a feng shui item and a high-class and costly jewelry product sought after by the wealthy.

Agarwood has a large amount of essential and belongs to the highest value
Agarwood has a large amount of essentials and belongs to the highest value

2. Floating agarwood

When compared to the agarwood lines, this kind of agarwood has the lowest value. Floating is extremely popular in the market because of its affordable price and ease of usage. The color of this agarwood is bright and irregular. The scent is not unmistakable until used for a long time. The age usually lasts from 10 to 15 years and will be processed into final products.

VI. Distinguish natural – fake agarwood

There are various ways to distinguish between real and fake products and the origin of agarwood.

1. Observation

The fragrance of fake agarwood is highly intense, and it is impregnated with a very dark brown or black tone. The natural one has a slight smell and color depending on the age of the one. The color is quite natural, and the gloss is moderate.

2. Smelling

The scent of natural agarwood is usually faint. Not too intense, but long-lasting and very pleasant. In particular, the fragrance will be highly mild while you are not wearing it. But when worn on the hand, body heat and friction will create a more robust and better fragrance. The types of fake one are often oil-impregnated with chemical oil and rough surface.

  • It has a mild scent
  • The essential oil is visible

3. Burning

Instead of smelling directly, you can burn wood samples to smell. When we burn it, natural agarwood emits a pleasant scent and produces minimal smoke.

There are some underlying reasons why it is a unique product and has become more and more popular because of its benefits. Thien Moc Huong Agarwood Jewelry aspires to explain the question “what is agarwood” and the pertinent information to customers who want to own these high-end goods. Because of its high value, there are so many fake items outside and increased risk for users. Moreover, you need to immediately note for yourself to identify the real-fake products to avoid buying the wrong product of poor quality.

you can burn wood samples to smell
you can burn wood samples to smell

Read more: Distinguish the aged agarwood and young agarwood


In conclusion, investors seeking to diversify their portfolio and have a beneficial social impact may find that investing in agarwood trees offers a profitable and long-term possibility. Agarwood products are in higher demand than ever, which presents a major opportunity for high value and long-term returns.

But, before making a commitment to the development of agarwood trees, it is imperative to conduct careful research and due diligence. Making wise investment decisions requires knowledge of the agarwood’s grade, quality, market trends, and legal requirements. Investors may successfully traverse the agarwood tree investing landscape and potentially realize the benefits of this distinctive and valuable asset class by adhering to the guidelines and advice provided in this comprehensive guide.

Read more: 12 things you have to know about agarwood benefits. Why agarwood is so expensive?

Read more: Are you Wearing Feng Shui Bracelet in the Correct Way?

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