Cypress wood is often used for outdoor furniture because it is highly resistant to decay. As explained by InStylePatio.com, cypress contains a natural oil called "cypressine" which deters insects, fungus and other sources of decay. Despite its natural resilience, however, cypress wood can still lose its luster over time. UV damage and extreme weather can turn a gorgeous cypress furniture set gray and drab. You can take measures to protect cypress furniture, keeping its external appearance as resilient as its internal, nearly rot-proof core.
Things You'll Need
- UV protective wax
- Furniture covers
- Natural, nontoxic bug spray
- Wood oil
Wax your furniture every 6 months with a UV protective wax. While the surface of the furniture may already appear smooth and waxed, this is often just a glossy finish designed to add shine and protect from insect penetration. When dried, wax does more than offer additional shimmer, it also protects your cypress furniture from harmful UV rays that can discolor the wood. A number of UV protective waxes are on the market; most of them contain beeswax, carnauba wax or other natural extracts. The wax is best applied in a thin coat using a small rag.
Cover the furniture with rainproof furniture covers or plastic tarps. Rain protection will help deter rot and discoloration. Cover furniture between usages even if you don't expect rain. Wax alone will not always protect against UV rays. Covered furniture retains natural luster better than furniture left out in the elements.
Uncover your cypress furniture at least once every month even if you don't plan to use the furniture. Even though cypressine helps eliminate insects, there are still rare occurrences when you will find bugs on the furniture. Regular bug checks help you catch potential infestations before they get out of control. In the case of insects, use a natural spray to get rid of the pests. Sprays made from artificial chemicals are more likely to discolor your furniture than natural sprays. Even natural pest sprays may do some minor damage, so it's best to avoid preemptive spraying, especially since cypress naturally deters most insects in the first place.
Apply wood oil to the furniture once every year. Wood oil will add another layer of UV protection, and it will enhance the cypress furniture's natural cypressine levels. When applying oil, wait 2 to 3 hours for the oil to soak into the wood before you wipe away any excess oil with a dry rag. If you let the extra oil sit, the wood can become over saturated and prone to rot.
Store the cypress indoors if you are not using it for several months in a row. Cypress is a very lightweight wood, so storage is usually quite simple if you can just make a little extra room in your basement or storage unit.
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