Timber Furniture Protection

For every garden there needs to be a place where you can sit and admire the plants grow and the wildlife interactions.

Even botanic gardens and public parks share that same philosophy to maximise enjoyment.

It can be a stool, chair, chaise lounge, or a simple bench – raw timber or cushioned it becomes a comfort factor that will have you resting for 10 minutes or a few hours.

Timber garden furniture is admired for its colour, natural textures, durability and cost. It can be used in entertainment areas, on balconies or left out in the middle of the garden to age in harmony with its surroundings.

It is not only functional but has the capability of being located in the garden as a focal point. Function and beauty … a designers dream.


Selecting the right piece of furniture will usually be based on appearance, timber type, usage and make.

Home style will often influence the style and appearance of the furniture chosen.


There are three main timber types:-

  • Kwila refers to exotic timber. This timber can be left outdoors to weather with minimal care slowly aging to a beautiful silvery grey colour, yet maintaining its smooth texture.  Kwila will however need to be bled, a process of wetting the timber to release excess colours that may stain clothing, decking and paving.
  • Teak comes mostly from Vietnam. It is lighter in colour and is the most attractive when left untreated to age into a natural colour.
  • Jarrah furniture comes from the Western Australian gum tree (Eucalyptus marginata). The natural timber colour varies from light pink to dark red. When aged jarrah turns silver grey but can be kept ‘original’ with maintenance. Jarrah does not need to be bled. Generally more expensive than the other two types of timber, Jarrah however has the reputation and quality for exceptionally well made furniture.

When selecting your outdoor furniture look for these signs for quality:-

  • does not creak or wobble when lightly lifted and shaken
  • heavy weight for reduced wind movement in storms
  • zinc plated steel fittings which do not rust
  • seats are comfortable even without cushions
  • tables are high enough for chairs to be pushed in without banging on table legs

General Maintenance

  • Shortly after purchasing any new garden furniture tighten all screws.
  • Apply a timber protection coating if you do not want the aged look.
  • Depending on timber you may need to lightly sand and reapply a protective coating every few months or yearly.

How To Bleed Kwila

  • Place the furniture on a grassed area upside down.
  • Hose the item and keep moist for about 1 hour. Runoff water will appear light brown.
  • Flip furniture right side up. Continue to hose and moisten the furniture as before.
  • Maintain moisture on the furniture until droplets of water are clear.
  • Once dry re-oil the furniture.

Gardening Prizes

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