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Preparing Your Pressure-Treated Wood

Garden with wooden raised beds and timber fencing.

Landscape pressure-treated timber projects can be stunning, all while having very practical applications. When you put so much work into your landscape projects, you will want to ensure they last. Insect infestations, harsh weather, natural rot and decay are your enemies. Un-cut pressure-treated wood can withstand such conditions.

Pressure-Treated Timber

The long, functional lifespan of pressure-treated timber is achieved with a process where a water and preservative-agent solution is applied under high pressure. The active ingredients are key in protecting the wood from termites, fungus and moisture. Pressure-treated wood can be wet for several weeks for this solution to dry completely.

Why Seal and Coat?

Hemlock, hem fir and Douglas fir are common woods used for pressure-treated landscape timber. These woods are not naturally resistant to rot. Because the exterior of pressure-treated wood has been treated, the exterior is protected. However, the center of the timber is still vulnerable.

During installation, it is likely that timbers will be cut to fit the particular project. It is then that any untreated ends leave the pressure-treated timber vulnerable. It is important that these exposed ends are treated to preserve the integrity of the wood.

How to Protect the Timbers

Protecting your pressure-treated wood project by sealing the exposed ends is very simple. Choose an end-treatment sealant that is appropriate for your particular project. Sealant choices relate to whether your timbers will be above ground or below ground and your choice of finished appearance.

A clear or semi-transparent, oil-based sealant will keep the wood’s natural coloring. You can stain and seal at the same time. There are combination stains and sealants should you wish to stain your whole project. It is important to note that sealant is not designed to be applied over stain. So remember, you should always preserve first and stain later.

The pressure-treated timber must be very dry before it is able to absorb any sealant. Should your timbers still be moist from the pressure treatment process, you will have to wait. Waiting times will depend on the climate.

An easy test to check if your pressure-treated wood is ready for sealant is to pour a small amount of water on a timber. If the water beads, you need to wait for the pressure-treated wood to dry out more. If the water is absorbed by the wood, the timbers are dry enough to accept the sealant or stain.

Landscape Supply

Southern Landscape Supply carries pressure-treated timbers for numerous landscaping projects. Pressure-treated timbers can fulfill many landscaping needs in a beautiful manner. Call today for pricing on individual and bulk timbers.

Posted on behalf of Southern Landscape Supply