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Yakusugi Items

Yakusugi Items

■About Yaku-sugi (Cedar tree grown in Yakushima Island)

In December 1993, Yakushima Island in Kagoshima Prefecture became the first-designated UNESCO Natural World Heritage Site in Japan. Not all cedar trees grown in this island cannot use the name “Yaku Sugi”. Only cedar trees that are more than 1000 years old can be called “Yaku Sugi”. Cedar trees more than 100 years old but less than 1000 years old are usually called “Kosugi (younger or small Yaku Sugi)” and younger than 100 years old, it is called “Jisugi (ground Yaku Sugi). Only native cedar trees with 1000 years old or more are allowed to be called “Yaku Sugi”.

■“Jomon Sugi”, the oldest cedar tree in the island

In 1966, a giant Yaku Sugi cedar tree was first discovered in Yakushima Islands, whose height was 30m and the trunk diameter was 43m long. Later it was named “Jomon Sugi”. When it was discovered, people at that time first estimated the tree was almost 7200 years old, so they believed the tree lived there since the Jomon Period (the time in prehistoric Japan from about 12,000 BC to about 300 BC). In addition, complex-formed cedar trunk looks like the unique designs of Jōmon Pottery, a type of ancient pottery made during the period, whose rims of pots became much more complex and decorated.
Although there are a number of estimations regarding the actual age of Jomon Sugi, it is officially recognized to become more than 3000 years old.

■Yaku Sugi as a Material for Go & Shogi Equipment

Nowadays, it is totally banned to cut down Yaku Sugi. Even today, some cut-down trees were accidentally found from the ground after it was buried for a long period of time. These trees were initially cut down to be used as building materials, but was not used at all and left behind for a long time. Yaku Sugi is, of course, regarded very valuable wood and it will be even more rare and valuable in the near future as less and less Yaku Sugi will appear on the market.
Yaku Sugi is famous for the highest quality material for furniture, decorative graving, interior accessories. Thanks to its unique grain patterns, color, fragrance, and rarity, it is highly appreciated and suitable to make Go & Shogi equipment, and these products are very popular among customers all over the world.
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