In anticipation of their 100th Anniversary, the Garden Club of Larchmont recently hired me to design and implement a freshening up of the Larchmont Library property. In addition to adding new plantings and paths, I did some research on teak wood benches that could be donated to the library by members of our community.
That's how I discovered TeakCloseouts.com. Their benches were selling for half of what others charge for solid teak. I was intrigued but skeptical. Digging deeper into the site, I clicked on “Where do we get this stuff?”
“Teak Closeouts prides itself on offering real deals on quality teak in the mid-range construction quality. Some of our closeouts will rival the quality of the American-made teak catalog companies. Most of the Ebay teak importers are selling the low to mid-level construction quality. But, if you listen to them, you might think GOD constructed it. This is a no BS site.”
I was impressed by the straightforwardness. The site describes the grades of wood, types of construction and how they can offer such good prices. They buy teak furniture from overstock, bankrupt companies or any kind of closeout.
I was particularly concerned about the origin of the teak. Exotic wood can come from illegal harvests from protected forests. A company representative was very honest. They import from Indonesia, which is very strict with teak exports. Still, the origin cannot always be identified (TeakCloseouts.com sometimes buys stock that is years old). So the company is about to participate in the next best thing: TREES4TREES. It's a nonprofit that supports reforestation initiatives through partnerships with manufacturers and local communities in Indonesia. What they sell, they replant.
Then, a surprising thing happened. The company representative offered to send me a bench in return for a product review. A week later, my 4' teak bench arrived. It came in five pieces with visual instructions, six long screws and an Allen wrench. Putting the bench together was a cinch, although it took me a bit to figure out which pieces to connect first. The metal pegs and pre-drilled holes were spot on. The unfinished wood is beautifully sanded with no rough edges. A sanding cloth is included in case there are rough spots. Trying out my new garden bench, I marveled at its sturdiness.
I can see why this bench might be a closeout. The wood variation is uneven but who cares? In a season or two, it will weather to a silvery patina (teak has a high oil content so it doesn't need to be sealed or painted).
I highly recommend buying from TeakCloseouts.com. The company is responsive and forthright. Their selection of chairs, tables and loungers is extensive. And you can't beat the prices.
Catherine Wachs is The Lazy Gardener, a Larchmont-based landscape designer with clientele in Westchester, New York and southern Connecticut.