Lin Yao Liao. Bench. January 31st , 2018.
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.
The resins in both western cedar and northern white cedar render these woods resistant to both insects and rot. Cedar is a lightweight wood, making it the perfect choice if you plan to move or rearrange your outdoor furniture often. Cedar is also a good choice if you would like your bench to match your house or other furnishings, since it paints and stains well. In fact, yearly cleaning and sealing of cedar are recommended, as the soft grain becomes rough over time if left untreated. Left in a natural state, cedar weathers to an elegant silvery gray over time. Bear in mind that cedar is rather soft, so it will dent and scratch more easily than harder woods like shorea or teak. Paradoxically, since cedar retains moisture, rather than drying out, it’s more resistant to cracking than many other woods.
Certainly, providing movable furniture opens up the possibility that it might be stolen. However, if the area is supervised by an attendant, or if the furniture is located near another amenity or activity where staff is present, then vandalism and theft become much less likely (Bryant Park reports that just a few of its hundreds of movable chairs are stolen each year). See below for examples of movable chairs in action.
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