Ipe is a Brazilian hardwood that grows in tropical South and Central America.
It is derived from the Tabebuia Tree, which is indigenous to Mexico, the Caribbean, and Argentina, as well as the American tropics and subtropics.
Ipe is the most popular wood for siding, decking other outdoor uses since it is regarded as the hardest and most durable kind of timber.
Harvesting of the Tabeuia trees is strictly monitored in order to prevent over-harvesting.
The Tabebuia tree is also known as the trumpet tree. It is a flowering tree with pink, light purple, or brilliant yellow flowers.
Tabebuia trees add color and beauty to outdoor landscapes and flourish in hot climates.
There are many species of Tabebuia trees but these are the most common types:
- Tabebuia impetiginosa is also known as ‘Ipe’ or ‘Purple Trumpet Tree’. This tree has showy trumpet-shaped flowers that are rose-pink to purple.
- Tabebuia chrysotricha is also known as ‘Gold Tree’ or ‘Gold Trumpet Tree’. This tree has bright yellow flowers with a round crown, showy funnel-shaped flowers, and tan-colored bark.
- Tabebuia heterophylla is also known as ‘Pink Trumpet Tree’. This tree has pink showy flowers that bloom in spring and summer.
- Tabebuia caraiba is also known as ‘Silver Trumpet Tree’. This tree has showy yellow flowers and palmately compound leaves.
Where Ipe Is Harvested?
Ipe is also called Brazilian Walnut or Lapacho and comes from the forests of Central and South America. The areas in Brazil where Ipe is harvested are called Projects.
These areas are protected, controlled, and monitored. Only two to three trees per hectare can be harvested over the course of a fifteen-year harvesting period within a project.
Tabebuia serratifolia species produces the hardest Ipe. It is now mainly harvested and sold from Bolivia due to over-harvesting in Brazil.
Benefits of using Ipe wood
- Ipe wood is smooth and splinters are rare to experience.
- Ipe ages well and is naturally resistant to fire and rot.
- Ipe is a strong and durable wood that is usually used in coastal regions. Its wood is known for its resistance to fungus and insect attacks.
- Due to its strong nature, it can last up to 75 years depending on the environment.
- Pau D’Arco is a special herb made from the leaves and bark of many species of Tabebuia tree. Indigenous communities have used the extract to heal a variety of illnesses for ages and also sell it as tea.
- Ipe wood can be used in timber form for many different projects.
- Ipe wood is also made into Trespa HPLs (High Pressure Laminate) panels, which can be used for a variety of things.
Ipe Wood As Decking
Ipe decking is naturally resistant to rot and decay and has a variety of uses. Due to its strength and durability, it is an obvious choice for commercial projects.
It can be used in places that are heavily used such as, expansive beach piers or boardwalks, or even public benches. It’s also a top choice for residential decking because of its strength, attractiveness, and low maintenance.
Ipe decking is easily visible outside of any home, giving the home a really exotic appearance. You can choose between the two types of grain, either wavy or straight, depending on what you prefer.
The Lee Roy Jordan Lumber Company is proud to offer ipe decking as an option for our customers.
Ipe has many distinct characteristics just like other tropical woods. It is a really durable wood that looks beautiful and weathers extremely well.
The wood can also be used to build docks, walkways, and supports for buildings, among other things. By investing in Ipe, you may avoid ever having to worry about maintaining or replacing a deck.