Outdoor Garden Seats and Benches

Cedar is one of the most popular building and construction materials in the world. It is used both indoors and outdoors on everything from exterior siding to interior paneling, from furniture to art. This article will focus on the use of cedar in outdoor garden seats and benches with techniques and tips on how to finish this beautiful wood to achieve just the right colors, textures and longevity desired.

Cedar does not require a finish because it naturally withstands insect attack and the elements of the outdoors. Many people prefer to allow their outdoor cedar furniture to age naturally without a stain or finish. With the passage of time this colorful wood will slowly weather to a silver-grey and the grain of the wood will become slightly raised. Darker streaks will eventually form because of the reaction between the Cedar resin and the hardware. If dark streaks are not what you are looking for, there are other options for finishing.

Thompsons Wood Sealer, or other good wood sealers, is helpful because they block the pores of the wood. This allows the wood to fade to its natural silver-grey color, but inhibits the grain from becoming raised.

If you would like to maintain the mellow tones, ranging from light amber to a deep golden brown, of your garden seats and benches, many different finishes can be used. A high quality penetrating sealer and clear or solid exterior stain is most often recommended. These sealers and stains are easily found at all home improvement centers and even at Walmart! There is an extraordinary selection of colors to match practically any d├ęcor or project. It is a good idea to choose a stain with a UV inhibitor to preserve the original attractive look of your outdoor furniture as the suns rays are one of the strongest enemies to wood for lasting beauty. To refresh the finish, you may choose to re-apply a coat of stain about every 3 years.

Paint can be used on outdoor chairs and other exterior surfaces, but will eventually need to be scraped and refinished.

Stain is the best choice since it does not trap moisture and there is no flaking or peeling. Or better yet, enjoy cedar’s natural resistance to rot and decay!