Teak, or Tectona Grandis, is a tropical tree that produces durable, beautiful hardwood for use in furniture and boats among other things. Teak is one of the most valuable of all hardwoods due to its strength and durability. Known for its weather-proof qualities, Teakwood garden benches have graced the parks of England for over 100 years.

Teak trees grow tall and straight with round treetops, oval shaped leaves, and rounded-triangular shaped trunks. Their rate of growth depends on several factors, including environmental, topographical, drainage, as well as types and qualities of both soil and seeds. Other factors such as temperature, climate, humidity and rainfall impact the development of Teakwood since it thrives only in locations with distinct wet and dry seasons. Teak plantations, or farmed Teak, can be found in equatorial regions of Central and South America and Southeast Asia. Teak is a species that thrives in plantation environments.

Due to its substantial oil content, Teak naturally protects itself from many elements such as insects, bacterial diseases, fungi, excessive dry or wet conditions, and even acids. Once a Teak tree reaches two to three years old, its natural oil content will protect it even from forest fires – though these are a near impossibility in the lush tropical rain forest.

Teakwood is one of the most durable, beautiful and valuable natural hardwoods in the world. Hard, heavy, strong and versatile, Teakwood has a multitude of uses. The furniture industry accounts for about 85% of its use, but Teak also plays an important role as the essential timber in ship and yacht building, joinery, flooring, carving, cabinetwork, paneling, turnery, tanks, vats, and fixtures requiring high resistance to acids. Because of its many uses, demand for Teak has risen steadily over time.

Learn more about teak at:

State of the World’s Forests 2001, Food and Agriculture Org., U.N.
Excerpt from Teak: A Global Overview, Unasylva, FAO