There are many factors to consider when determining the best material to use for your outdoor gazebo furniture. Aside from mere aesthetics, it’s important to keep in mind the conditions the furniture will encounter throughout the season so you can maximize your outdoor enjoyment.
Ipe is a strong and dense tropical hardwood found in Central and South America. This durable wood is valued for its natural resistance to decay, as well as its natural insect resistance. Ipe also does well in wet conditions, so it is an ideal choice for a gazebo where you expect a lot of moisture, such as close to water sources. A tight-grained wood with dark coloring, ipe is hard and will withstand the elements.
Teak is another tropical hardwood found originally in South and Southeast Asia, though it is also now cultivated in Africa and the Caribbean. Brownish-red in color, this wood will darken as it ages, but is susceptible to weathering if left in sunlight. Naturally insect-resistant, this wood also contains a high oil content making it ideal for weather resistance. A strong wood with a tight grain, teak is also resistant to decay such as rot, fungi, and mildew.
Cedar, in contrast, is a soft wood native to North America. With hues ranging from reddish to a pale yellow, the straight grain and fine texture of cedar make it popular in outdoor furnishings. Because it is less dense, cedar is lightweight yet still durable; it is naturally resistant to insect infestation and decay thanks to its natural oils.
Resin is a resilient material in outdoor furniture because it can withstand sunlight, humidity, and rain. The resin is sometimes laid over a metal frame for added strength and durability. In addition to its versatility, many high quality resin options are also UV resistant so they won’t crack or fade in sunlight; these qualities make resin a desirable option for sunny locales.
Aluminum is a strong and lightweight metal that can hold up in rain, sun, and extreme temperatures. Because aluminum resists moisture, and therefore rust, better than other metals it boasts easy upkeep; in addition, its light weight makes it easy to move and store. Cast aluminum is a good option for added rust protection because it is rust proof and can also withstand rain, wind, sunshine, and extreme temperatures.
Wrought Iron is sturdy and strong, and its distinct look and heaviness lend this option a certain gravitas you just can’t find in other options. This material is a good choice for windy locations because of its weight, and it is unaffected by sunlight. Only semi-rust proof in its natural state, wrought iron, when properly treated, is resistant to both moisture and rust.