For all our timber we use untreated cypress macrocarpa (Hesperocyparis macropcarpa) sourced from small family mills, who harvest end-of-life trees from Gippsland farms.
Hesperocyparis macropcarpa (also known as Monterey cypress or golden cypress), was extensively planted throughout south eastern Australia over the last 150 years and used as wind-breaks. These ubiquitous plantings are coming of age, being replaced, and many are being harvested for their beautiful and naturally rot-resistant timbers.
Whilst this cypress is a workable soft-wood, it is also ground-durable on account of its fresh smelling oils which offer resistance to rotting, borer and termite attack. Thus chemical treatment is unnecessary, which means no toxic leachates getting into your soil or food. The heartwood can achieve an estimated 10-15 year life span with ground contact, and upwards of 15-25 years when not in contact with the ground but still exposed to full weather elements!
This timber shows off its golden, almost peachy hue, when finished and stained. Our rough-sawn, unfinished beds age gracefully to a silver-grey.
Golden cypress was introduced back in the day from North America, and whilst an exotic species, doesn’t tend to spread the same way as radiata pine (your standard ‘pine tree’). In recent times, farmers have been harvesting the cypress, and re-planting with a range of indigenous species, which function as wind-breaks, but also return some of the much needed habitat and biodiversity.
VEG uses this wonderful timber for our wicking beds and also VEG kitset raised beds, and we also occasionally use the timber for edging & retaining in landscape work. The good news is you can now get the timber direct from VEG. It comes in either Rough Cut, where you trim the ends to your desired length (cheaper), or VEG Cut, where we cut to exact length for you (bit pricier). Contact Brendon, our VEG Wicking Beds Manager, for more information or to quote an order.