Teak Wood

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Myanmar Teak Wood in various forms

 

This hardwood has always been a highly prized material and the most expensive comes from here in various forms such as logs, lumber, boards and “downstream” items such as outdoor furniture, material for artwork and other furniture. There is a long tradition in using this as a building material usually for palaces and monasteries in the past.

In Mandalay and vicinity are at least a dozen monasteries existent made from this fine material. They have great woodcarvings indoor and outdoor at the walls plus doors and marvelous statues with a highly artistic touch.

Tectona grandis, the Latin expression

is native to the tropics and in the last decades has been planted in Indonesia, central and south America. There are two parts of a trunk which are sold under the name of teak but have different properties, one is sapwood which is the outermost layer and the other is heart wood which is the core.

Sapwood is not as robust as core wood and this is always expressed in the price, since this is a rather a luxurious commodity prices can be 

quite high. Although there are plantations, mainly in Indonesia, South and Central America and some in India on a smaller scale the best is Burmese teak. Especially during colonial times, the English made a real depletion because the East India Company together with the British crown made huge profits by looting and stealing various commodities among them the hard wood, rubies and other precious stones.

The kings had a monopoly on this plus ivory, iron, and gems.

However, the constant need for money to serve their numerous wars led rulers to grant ship repair and trade concessions to French companies and the East India Company. Pearls from the Myeik or Mergui Archipelago were also very popular; this shabby English bunch gave alcohol in exchange for the pearls the diver brought up with the oysters.

Before that, Chinese traders came with their junks and traded useful goods for pearls, the English ousted them and made the Salones drug addicts to virtually steal the only valuable good they had from them.

They tried the same method with wood and there was a continuous struggle between the King and the colonial rulers who always cut much more trees as they were allowed by the quota they got from the Burmese Crown.

Up to about 3 decades ago the trees disappeared very fast since also the government tried to make lots of money with it. After they got this that it cant go on like that they started a reforestation program in various parts of the country where climate and soil was appropriate.

The country has the whole temperature scale from tropical heat, to tempered climate in Shan State which is about 1000m and a bit more plus all the way up at to around 6000m at the mountains of the north which are an extension of the Tibetan Himalayas with plenty of snow and glaciers.

At some places Japanese companies and government helped to bring this reforestation program under way, they also helped afterwards to maintain the plantings. Now very slowly they managed to virtually “turn the tide”, but now a new problem appeared in form of Chinese poachers who do the same as British did before in the mountains of the north. There they illegally cut soft wood such as pine and hardwood such as larch and other and they do it totally ruthless, just hit and run and leave burned land behind.

Teak Wood Carvings
Teak Wood Carvings at a Mandalay Monastery
Teak Logs
Elephants Pulling Teak Logs
Mandalay Teak Wood Carvings
Mandalay Teak Wood Carvings

Available for contemporary outdoor, patio and pool furniture,

benches, seating, tables, chaise lounges, dining sets and seating arrangements. There is also antique colonial style indoor items which are now real unique creations.

Burmese Teak Logs
Burmese Teak Logs
Teak Wood Carving Mandalay
Carving at a Mandalay Monastery
Myanmar Teak
Myanmar teak mirror frame

Teak Outdoor Furniture
Outdoor Furniture from Myanmar in excellent quality

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