Given a choice, most of us would choose furniture made from wood instead of those made from steel/metal or plastic. The appeal of wood-based furniture lies primarily on their elegance and sense of sturdiness. Besides, chairs, tables, chaise, benches, sun lounges and other timber-based garden and patio furniture blend so much better with the outdoors.
The recent increase in furniture made from timbers harvested from sustainable forests, as well as recycled furniture and timber, have made them even more appealing to the masses. You’re doing your part to save the earth – the feel good factor alone more than covers the added cost.
However, not all woods are equal. Some types of wood do not fare well when left in the open. Moisture, heat, cold, termites and burrowing insects can drastically reduce the lifespan of wood furniture. In addition, the maintenance of wood products – sanding, adding layers of varnish or paint, covering insect-bored holes – is a time-consuming process.
Nevertheless, there are many varieties of wood that fare very well out in the open. Wood such as cypress, cedar, redwood and acacia are extremely durable and can last many years, decades even, out in the garden. Plus, they look superb.
However, the best of the lot is arguably teak wood, which is roundly acknowledged as the most durable in the world. Native to South East Asia and the Indian subcontinent, teak wood is so hardy, it was at one time used in shipbuilding and bridge construction.
Teak wood produces a type of oil that repels insects, rodents, fungi and parasites. Unlike many other types of wood, the oil remains even after the wood is processed. The oil also provides great protection against the elements, be it the blistering summer sun or freezing winter gale. Teak garden furniture can last well over a century, and are usually passed down through generations.