Bench. Saturday , February 03rd , 2018 - 08:49:47 AM
Shorea is a genus name for almost 200 species of trees. Some of the more common names include Meranti, Lauan, Balau, and Philippine mahogany. Although it grows in Asian rainforests, Shorea is on its way to becoming a sustainable wood, due to the fact that harvesting is highly regulated. Shorea shares many positive attributes with teak while generally being less expensive. Shorea is a durable, dense, tight-grained hardwood that holds up well under the rough treatment of daily use and inclement weather. Shorea lumber is also resistant to both insects and rot. Left to its own devices, the patina of shorea fades from gold to gray over time. The wood’s youthful glow can be sustained by treating it annually with oil from its more expensive cousin, teak.
For those concerned about sustainability and eco-friendly living, acacia makes a good choice. Acacia trees grow in such abundance in many regions of the world, that they’re often considered an invasive species. Acacia is a dense, durable hardwood that can withstand the elements. It is often used in boat building. Sealing acacia serves to enhance and preserve the wood’s rich, golden brown color. If left unsealed, acacia should be reserved for deck or patio furniture, since constant contact with the damp ground of a garden may cause the wood to discolor.
Benches retained their popularity as fitted seats in window alcoves, but in the 16th century they lost favour as freestanding pieces of furniture when chairs became more widely used. Upholstered versions were also made. Some of the most spectacular benches were made in the Spanish colonies in South America in the 17th century, notably in Cuzco, Peru, where benches bore enormous carved crestings and balustraded backs that were painted and gilded.
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