Teak Tree, or Tectona, is one of the tropical hardwood
birches, included in the family Verbenaceae. This tree is
originally from the plantations of South East Asia, and can
grow to a height of 30 - 40 m. As part of its life cycle,
this tree sheds its leaves every year at dry season. Its longevity
is very great, the Teak tree often living to an age of 100
years. Teak is especially noted for its capacity to withstand
changes in the weather and season.
One of the reasons for this is the ability of the Teak to
bend, but not break, in the face of high winds.
Also, the Teak tree resin typically has an oil in its Galih
(Cambium/heartwood) that is highly water resistant. This content
alone can protect the Teak from decay, insects, and bacteria.
At the same time, the combination of unique Teak tree content
and thick fibers make it easier to cut and then later sculpt
into pleasing forms.
Because of this special characteristic, not found in other
trees, there has always been interest in using Teak wood for
various types of furniture. The teak trees found in South-East
Asia forests reach a height of up to 150 feet, have reddish-green
leaves with rough skin, and heartwood that is brown to dark
gold in color. Of the main teak producers in the area, Indonesia,
India, Myanmar, Philippine, and Malaysia. Indonesia's teak
is considered of the highest quality in the world.
Cultivation and conservation of the Teak tree in Indonesia
is managed by the government of Indonesia, Perum Perhutani
(Forestation Company of Government). The largest producer
of teak in Indonesia is Java. Its geography and weather are
highly suitable to Teak tree plantations; Java Island is also
a manufacturing center where many furniture workers are employed
to process the wood of the Teak tree into unique and beautiful
get teak wood of the highest quality, there are some things
that must be carefully attended to in the retrieval process.
The older Teak trees, of up to 40 years in age, are the best
ones to be cut. In fact, the older the Teak tree, the better
will be the quality of its wood. Before cutting the Teak tree,
the water content must be drained from the tree by making
a cut at its under side. This draining process takes time,
1 to 2 years, in order to get the Teak tree dry enough that
it can be cut into Teak wood, and so ready for its main use
as the material for furniture and other products.
The most salient characteristic of Teak is its resistance
to all kinds of weather. Because of this, it is also resistant
to decay and easily repels insects. This is one of the reasons
that, unlike other woods, it is often used as the main material
for both indoor and outdoor furniture. Teak wood holds its
form over many years, even if left outside. Another reason
for the beauty of teak wood products is the special oil content
in its heartwood, which makes this wood always seen to gleam
- maintaining this glow even if it is left outside for a long
period of time. Additionally, Teak wood with its antibacterial
characteristics will not become brittle. The owner of teakwood
furniture, therefore, will not even find it necessarily to
add a preservative to keep it looking like new. Even so, it
can occasionally benefit from some polishing, or the application
of some varnish, to enhance its natural beauty.
Through much of recorded history Teak wood has been relied
upon and trusted for its uncommon strength. This wood is highly
prized by lovers and collectors of furniture the world over.
Because of it's rareness and the limited supply of teak in
the world, teak is increasingly being sought after and its
price increasing. The reputation of Teak throughout the whole
world in producing furniture of the highest quality has, however,
Indonesia, as the biggest teak supplier in the world, is
very committed to preserving the Teak tree through both practical
and visionary government programs. It is only through Perum
Perhutani (Forestation Company of Government) that Indonesia
can supply Teak wood for export. Not only this, but because
of the skill of our woodworkers and artisans, Indonesia produces
some of the most unique and interesting furniture products
to be found anywhere in the world.
Furniture hunters the world over immediately recognize the
characteristics of teak, and always stop to look at Indonesian
teak products, so reflective of our history and culture. The
demand for this Teak wood has increased so much that the Indonesian
government has been forced to implement a plantation program
entailing the cultivation, use, and protection of our Teak
This is because the teak is a perennial plant, and of great
importance to the economy of Indonesia. Construction material
and furniture that comes from Indonesian teak wood each have
their own increasing market, as well as increasing value.
Generally, Teak trees are harvested only after they have reached
ten years; although new technology has yielded certain Teak
types called 'Jati Genjah' (Fast Growing) that are also of
excellent quality. This will help Indonesia to continue to
be the preeminent supplier of teak in the world.