Timber: Teak

Although the teak tree Tectona grandis is a tree of a quite different family from the oak, and a native of India, it is used in ship-building like the oak, and the timber has some similarities.

It is a tree of uncommon size, with leaves twenty inches long, and sixteen broad. It bears a hard nut.

Many fine Indian ships are built of it.

A specimen was introduced into the Royal Gardens at Kew about sixty years ago, but from the warmth of the climate of which it is a native, it can never become a forest tree in this country.

Besides its value as timber, the teak has great beauty as a tree. It is found more than two hundred feet high, and the stem, the branches and the leaves are all very imposing. On the banks of the river Irrawaddy, in the Birman empire, the teak forests are unrivalled. They rise so far over the jungle or brushwood, by which tropical forests are usually rendered impenetrable, that they almost seem as if one forest were raied on gigantic poles over the top of another.

The teak has not the broad strength of the oak, the cedar, and some other trees; but there is a grace in its form which they do not possess.


Teak: Tectona grandis

summarised from "The Library of Entertaining Knowledge - Timber trees" (1829), pub. Charles Knight, Pall Mall.

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