About Teak

Teak tree - Tectona grandisWe only use the best quality Javanese Teak which is a close grained hardwood with high natural oil and rubber content.

It is one of the hardest, strongest and most durable of all woods, highly resistant to rotting and almost impervious to the effect of sun, rain, frost or snow.

These characteristics make it the ideal wood for outdoor garden furniture as it can be left outside all 12 months of the year, even in the UK!

The first plantations on the island of Java were planted by the Dutch and are now owned by the Indonesian government. Only a limited number of trees each year are allowed to be felled and an equal amount of reforestation ensures there is no detrimental effect to the country's natural resources. Faraway Furniture only use Teak from PERUM PERHUTANI forestry plantation and we hold a re-forestation certificate directly from the Indonesian government.

At Faraway Furniture, we source only the best quality heartwood Grade A teak for our products, made of trees of not less than 80 years of age. We only use teak which has been kiln dried to 8 - 12% moisture levels and we urge you to compare our quality of wood with other manufacturers who often use lower quality Teak with a much higher water content. Please be aware that low quality Teak (also known as sapwood) contains only a fraction of the amount of natural oil and rubber. This will mean that all of the necessary attributes of good quality Teak will be absent and the wood is likely to decay and rot within a short space of time. Our garden furniture can be left outside and with little care will be with you and your family for generations to enjoy.

When you receive your garden furniture, it will be in its natural state. Unless specifically requested, we do not oil our teak as many people prefer the natural colour of teak wood. Please be aware that pre-oiled teak is a common method used by less ethical manufacturers to hide the low quality and inferior grade of the teak wood.

Taking care of your new Teak Furniture:

Teak is a unique and durable hardwood which requires little or no care.

If you prefer your teak, like many do, in its natural state which is a graceful silver grey colour, then you literally have to do nothing. Teak, unlike other hardwoods, does not need any oiling, staining, lacquering or painting to keep healthy and maintain its durability. Treating the teak is only recommended if you prefer the golden yellow colour of the wood. Whether to oil or not, is purely a personal choice, doing either will not harm or detract from the strength or durability of the wood and will not affect our warranty.

The only maintenance we recommend for your teak garden furniture is occasional cleaning. This should be done with a mild soap (such as gentle hand cleaning soap) and warm water to preserve its natural elements. Please note that extending tables should always be lifted or moved whilst in the compacted position and using the support frame only. Under no circumstances should the table be lifted by the the table top. Ignoring this advice may cause irreparable damage to your new table which will not be covered by our warranty conditions.

For more stubborn stains such as red wine, a teak cleaner can be used or the stain area can be lightly sanded with fine sandpaper. You can order teak cleaner from our online store.

History of teak/about teak:

Teak (Tectona grandis), is one of the most valued woods in the world, and grows in areas between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn. Teak trees can grow up to 150 feet tall and have large, leathery, reddish green leaves that are shed in the drier months of the year. Teak's sap has natural anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties that make it resistant to parasites and disease. Teak also contains rubber and silica, which repel water. The wood also has great pliability, making it better able to withstand high pressure without cracking. This, combined with the fact that it is an extremely heavy wood, with dense fibres that make it relatively easy to cut and graft, make it one of the finest woods from which to construct outdoor garden furniture.

Click to enlarge
All teak from Indonesia must be certified by the government to verify that it comes from an approved source.

These strict environmental laws are saving many natural Teak forests.
Our certificate is shown on the left - click the image to enlarge.

The Teak plantations provide economic and environmental relief. They are the major source of income for many villages in tropical areas. Teak is increasing in value by up to 6% every year and has revenue of up to $30,000 US per trunk, which makes it a very resourceful cash crop.

Interesting facts about teak:

In the old cave temples of Salsette and elsewhere in Western India, pieces of teak more than 2000 years old have been found in good condition.

Teak was most sought after for building war ships in the 18 th century. Apart from being extremely tough and water resistant, it also does not splinter under gunfire. Splintering wood was the main cause of casualties in 18 th century naval warfare.

Teak is very dense and cannot float when first cut down. Thus loggers have to girdle the tree and let it dry for up to three years before they can float it to the mill.

Teak leafs are used as sandpaper by locals in the Javanese jungle due to its rough and extremely tough surface.

The World's largest Teak tree