Wooden Decks

Written by Rachel Arieff
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The most popular choices for wooden decks are treated pine, cedar, redwood, and Ipe. Treated pine is natural pine wood that has had chemical preservatives applied to it. These preservatives are necessary for pine decking because pine wood in its natural state cannot resist rot, termites, or weather damage as well as these other woods. Pine is relatively cheap, however, and treated pine gives the wood the extra protection it needs to perform well as a decking wood.

Cedar is another popular wood native to the United States. Cedar is a soft wood, not a hard wood. However, it has the ability to remain straight and flat, or to be shaped as you like it, without warping or cracking. Drive a nail into cedar and the wood won't splinter on the other side. Rather, the nail will come out clean. This is due to cedar's naturally-occurring preservative oil that not only gives it its wonderful fragrance, but keeps it supple and splinter free and repels termites.

Redwood and Ipe Wooden Decks

Redwood is an extremely high-quality wood. This is a hard wood derived from the giant redwood trees in the Pacific Northwest. Because of the increasing scarcity of these trees, though, redwood is not as plentiful and is thus more of an investment. However, it really delivers on durability, workability, and sheer beauty.

Ipe, grown solely in the South American rainforests, is the hardest wood of them all, making it perfect for deck and boardwalk construction. The Ipe tree contains amazing self-preservation properties that make it immune to water rot, weather damage, and termites.

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