Mate (gourd) made from palo santo wood is the most valued wooden container to serve yerba mate, mainly because of its pleasant, resin like aroma which remains in the container throughout the serving of mate. Palo santo is the name given to several types of trees, the most sought after being Bursera graveolens.
Palo santo gourd is used mainly for drinking cold mate (terere). Before it can be used for hot mate it has to be completely coated in metal. In cooler and drier climates palo santo without such a coating will quickly crack and is only good for terere. Palo santo should be kept in constant humidity levels as it does not like changes. It should also be allowed to dry slowly. Palo santo is not susceptible to fungi and does not absorb any aromas. It can therefore be used to serve both clear and aromatic yerba mate infusions. Some people recommend curing palo santo before use to limit the risk of cracking.