Wood Outdoor Furniture
There is something about an old, weathered teak set that still performs well.. In general, wood looks fantastic when it is new. If you don’t mind a little upkeep you can keep it looking new. But the real charm is an old wood set with character, yet solid bones. Depending on the wood species used, many dining tables have ingenious leaves that fold away into the tables. There are many types of wood used for patio furniture.
What wood species are suitable for outdoor use?
There are many species of high-oil-content trees who’s wood is used to build furniture. Popular species include teak, jarrah, eucalyptus, acacia, nyatoh, jotoba, ipe, shorea – there are many! In our opinion, teak has a special place in our hearts. It has been farmed for centuries, takes a beautiful finish, does not rot, wood-boring insects hate it, and hey – they build boats out of it! Teak gets its wonderful characteristics from its high oil content and its embedded silica. Other rot-resistant woods are jarra, jotoba (brazilian cherry), ipe and shorea. Avoid furniture made from aqcacia, nyatoh, or eucalyptus, unless the furniture will not see outdoors. These species are really not good choices for outdoor use. They have much less durability in the elements.
Stewardship – Please make sure that if you buy wood furniture, the company practices responsible forestry management. Selective logging (instead of clear-cutting), and the replanting of more trees than are taken out ensure a sustainable industry. FSC certification is generally good, but is not everywhere, or may be more stringent in some areas than others. There are many sustainability programs in existence, so ask your retailer how the wood furniture you are interested in is certified. If purchasing for outdoor use, avoid the cheap wood species. PLEASE DON’T BUY FURNITURE WHICH WILL END UP IN A LANDFILL WITHIN 5 YEARS. Pay for better furniture that can take the elements and give you a 20-40 year lifespan – which makes it much less expensive in the long run.
The answer to this question entails that you look within yourself! How obsessive are you? To keep wood furniture looking as beautiful as it did the day you bought it, there is typically some work involved. However, beauty does not mean brawn! Here’s why: As most (untreated) wood furniture oxidizes, it changes color. Some woods turn gray, some turn dark. In most cases, this does not affect the durability of the wood. Some people object to this process for aesthetic reasons. So, if you insist that the furniture looks great all the time, plan on a once or twice yearly treatment of some type, and get some covers for the rainy season! If you like furniture like your favorite pair of jeans, faded and with character, you’ll love teak or ipe or some of the other species. to prevent mildew, keep organic material from gaining a foothold by occasionally hosing the furniture off.