Why Is Mango Wood Sustainable?
Mango wood comes from the same tree from which the fruit of that name was derived. Even though the wood is hard, it is flexible and gorgeous. Mango timber is considered a more sustainable option than other tropical timber because mango plantations usually harvest the trees after the fruiting period has finished or has slowed down significantly. We were curious, however: How sustainable is mango wood?
It is sustainable to use mango wood because mango trees capture carbon from the atmosphere, while mango wood furniture stores this carbon for long periods of time. Because mango trees grow in large numbers, natural mango wood is readily available as a byproduct of mango fruit, making it highly sustainable.
Mango Wood Esthetics
The beauty of mango wood, on its own, is undeniable. This wood adheres exceptionally well to staining and sanding and features a variety of colors, pinks, greens, and distinct patterns that come from a special fungus that grows inside the wood. The marks on the wood are similar to knots or rot marks on aged oak (these merely add to the overall visual effect of the wood).
What is Mango Wood?
In its original form, mango wood comes from the Mango tree, the tree that bears the sweet, meaty fruit, mango. The dense grain of mango wood makes it hardwood. This makes it an excellent material for furniture because it is strong and durable. Its density makes it very durable and it can maintain its high luster texture for many years. Unlike other hardwoods, mango wood is often known for being more affordable and sustainable.
The origin of Mango wood
Plantations grow mangoes all over the world, including in India, Southeast Asia, Mexico, Brazil, and even Australia. Mango wood is the perfect alternative to traditional woods such as oak and maple for furniture construction. Typically, mango trees reach full productivity within 10 to 15 years of being planted. They become trickier to harvest as they grow older and taller and less fruitful as they age. After which, the old trees are felled and new seeds are planted to allow the farmers to continue producing more fruit. Doing this ensures that the price of mango wood is reasonable in comparison to other materials.
Mango wood is considered more sustainable since once an old mango tree is felled, the newly planted tree would take around 15 years to mature, on the other hand, oak trees take around 75 years to mature. So typically, creating furniture from mango wood can aid in relieving deforestation of endangered species.
What color is mango wood?
Mango wood is typically golden brown, but there are also variations that have a more yellow tint or have a more black or pink tint. The wood is often beautifully discolored because of fungus, mostly due to 'spalting', an age-old process that causes the wood to change color. Such mango wood presents beautiful streaks of colors, from light beige to black. This look is most desired by artisans.
The color of mango wood is generally a rich deep brown when unfinished and finished with only clear wax, which is similar to oak or mahogany. Mango wood also takes wood stains well, producing a rich dark brown color.
What are the uses of mango wood?
The softness of mango wood makes it an ideal material to use for furniture making. It is easy to cut and shape, and its ability to be intricately carved makes it an excellent choice for furniture makers. When it comes to outdoor furniture, Mango wood is also a great choice as it is highly resistant to water.
The list of Mango wood uses is endless, including handcrafted wood furniture, floors, wall panels, veneer, plywood, turned objects, musical instruments, kitchen accessories, wooden tables, wooden storage, console sets, and leather curing equipment, as well as serving platters, chopping boards, and trays.
Benefits of mango wood furniture
Some of the major benefits of using mango wood furniture include:
- Sustainability: The mango tree's cultivation as a fruit tree makes its wood highly sustainable. The trees mature rather quickly for a hardwood, reaching maturity after around 15 years. At this point, they begin to produce less fruit or cease to do so altogether. It is just the less "fruitful" tree that is chopped down to make wood, due to the fact that mango farmers grow new trees every 7 to 15 years before the more aged trees become unproductive. This creates a sustainable cycle of plantation and harvesting.
- Durability: It has a strength comparable to Ash or Oak and doesn't wear out quickly, so your furniture will last for years. Mango wood is a durable hardwood, so you can create bespoke furniture designs that won't wear out. So you can without any worry use mango furniture for your new home that will last for a longer time.
- Affordable: Since mango trees are sustainable, the wood is also cheaper than hardwood counterparts. Once the tree is felled, only minimal processing is required, which keeps the cost low as well. So you can now save on your budget and use it for other necessities. This way you can create a piece of durable and sustainable furniture at the lowest cost possible.
Drawbacks of mang wood furniture
Just like other wood, there are drawbacks attached to mango wood too.
The mango wood does not need much maintenance, but if exposed to excessive heat or light, it can crack fairly easily. During hot weather, mango wood is prone to becoming dehydrated. In order to avoid this from happening, we would recommend you to keep the mango wood furniture moisturized with the help of furniture polish.
Even though mango wood is highly durable, It is highly suggested to not use the wood without a final finish such as wax since otherwise, it will be susceptible to fungus attacks.
Lastly, it has been found that Mango wood can cause skin irritation. It would be necessary to ensure that the piece of furniture that you choose to be of mango wood, does not come into regular contact with your skin especially if you suffer from skin allergies.
How to take care of mango wood furniture
It is necessary to maintain and take good care of mango wood furniture to ensure that it will last for longer period of time. Some of the tips to take care of it are:
- Keep the wood hydrated: Use furniture polish to do so otherwise it will be more prone to cracking.
- Clean with care: Dont use harsh chemical products or cleansers when cleaning the furniture otherwise it will ruin its finishing.
- Be wary of liquids: In case a liquid is spilled over the furniture, be sure to clean it as soon as possible otherwise it can lead to irreparable damage.