Lin Yao Liao. Bench. February 05th , 2018.
The timber from the stately sequoia is not a good choice for the ecologically minded, since redwood trees grow slowly and are in limited supply. The wood’s many fine attributes, however, ensure that redwood will always be used for outdoor furniture as long as harvestable stands of these majestic trees remain. Redwood is durable and weathers well, and is also naturally resistant to decay and insects. Among redwood’s most valued attributes are stability and a tendency not to shrink nor warp. Like cedar, redwood is relatively soft, putting it at risk for dents and scratches. The deep brown beauty of redwood can be protected and enhanced by a coat of clear sealer. If left unsealed, redwood can exact revenge on its owners by staining clothing with the natural tannins that give the tree its name.
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.
Benches should not face each other directly unless they are being used for games. People tend to feel uncomfortable when they sit face to face with a stranger, and will twist around or sit sideways to avoid eye contact. Occasionally, pairs of benches should be placed at a 90 to 120 degree angle, which is good both for conversations and for sitting alone.
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