Teak Awareness Day takes place on April 12 in the U.S. Teak is a type of tropical hardwood tree, belonging to the family of Lamiaceae. This deciduous plant is enormous and thrives in mixed hardwood forests. Teak is one of the most sought-after timbers for premium furniture, so there is a growing international demand for it. When freshly milled, teak wood gives off a leather-like aroma, and is prized for its durability and water resistance. Boats, exteriors, veneers, furniture, carvings, turnings, and other wood products often use teak wood.
History of Teak Awareness Day
Teak is a tropical hardwood species and its botanical name is Tectona Grandis. It is a huge and tall deciduous tree, which is commonly found in South and Southeast Asian hardwood forests. This tree is native to Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, and India. Teak wood has a peculiar aroma and is tough, water-resistant, and extremely durable. Usually, teak wood is used for luxury, high-end, and sturdy furniture. It is said that the name of this tree is derived from the Malayalam word ‘tekka’, or a Portuguese word ‘Teca.’
Teak was first described by Carl Linnaeus the Younger in 1782 in his well-known work, “Supplementum Plantarum.” In 1975, Harold Norman Moldenke provided further descriptions of four varieties of this species in a journal named “Phytologia.” Each form, as per Moldenke, varies from the type of specimen.
In 1680, Sri Lanka became the first country to establish commercial teak plantations. Around 1865, the business of teak plantations was at its zenith, when Indian Teak acquired international recognition for its water-resistant teak variety. While Indian teak was establishing itself in international timber markets, Myanmar’s Ministry of Environmental Conservation and Forestry discovered the world’s two largest living teak trees in 2017. Myanmar adopted an innovative style of teak farming afterward. This method changed the face of the teak wood industry.
It was in 1902 when the first teak plantation outside Asia was set up in Nigeria. Initially, Indian teak seeds were used. However, as the Taungya method became popular, seeds from Myanmar were imported and used. This took the teak plantations in the country to unprecedented heights. Trinidad and Tobago became the first country in the Americas to plant teak. Teak Awareness Day was founded by Westminster Teak in 2019.
Teak Awareness Day timeline
Linnaeus describes teak for the first time in his book written in Latin.
The first teak plantation outside Asia is developed in Nigeria.
Harold Norman Moldenke provides new descriptions of four varieties of the teak species.
Westminster Teak establishes Teak Awareness Day to celebrate this wonderful wood.
Teak Awareness Day FAQs
What should you avoid with teak?
Steel wool should not be used because minute specks of metal can corrode wood grain over time.
How can you prevent teak from fading?
Teak furniture should be cleaned with a special teak cleaner and then sealed with a golden sealer to avoid fading and graying.
How frequently should teak be oiled?
Teak needs to be oiled every three to four months.
Teak Awareness Day Activities
Share images online
This day is a good opportunity to share pictures of your teak furniture with your friends. This will motivate them to give teak furniture a try too.
Purchase some teak furnishings
Carpenters prefer teak due to its durability, firmness, density, and water resistance. Keep a tab on any teak furniture sales going on in your area.
Attend a workshop
Finished teak wood products are a delight to the senses, but knowing about the process of furniture production is even better. Schedule a day with your local wood workshop and observe the manufacturing process to learn more about teak furniture.
5 Fascinating Facts About Teak
It changes color over time
Fresh teak wood has a golden to medium brown tint, which often turns gray with age.
The highest oil content
Of all natural woods, teak has the highest oil content, making it highly resistant to deterioration.
It reacts well to metal
Teak wood does not crack, warp, or blacken when it comes in contact with metals.
The best quality
The best timber comes from teak trees that are between 40 and 80 years of age.
Teak tree curing
Teak trees must be cured for one or two years before being chopped.
Why We Love Teak Awareness Day
Teak is a long-term paying investment
Teak is more expensive compared to other hardwoods, but for a good reason, as it lasts forever. Teak wood is a great long-term investment.
The hardest wood
Teak is one of the world's strongest and most durable hardwoods. Teak patio furniture is built to last for over a century! Teak is versatile and looks great in every form, be it unfinished, painted, or stained.
Maintenance is minimal
Teak outdoor furniture requires very less maintenance and can be kept in the open for extended periods. It does not warp, break down, mold, or rot. Termites stay away as well.
Teak Awareness Day dates