Heartwood color can vary, ranging from a pale pinkish orange to a deep brownish red. Most pieces tend to start reddish orange when freshly cut, darkening substantially over time to a reddish/purplish brown. Padauk's initial orange coloration can be preserved through various finishing procedures.
Padauk has a very unique reddish orange coloration. Unfortunately, this dramatic color is frequently lost due to improper or inadequate finishing. If finished properly, the orange color can be preserved for many years with little to no signs of degradation. (See the article Preventing Color Changes in Exotic Woods for more information.)
Padauk is moderately heavy, strong, and stiff, with exceptional stability. It's a popular hardwood among hobbyist woodworkers because of its unique color.