Japanese Cedar is the national Tree of Japan. According to legend, in the 1600s a Japanese lord was too poor to donate a stone or bronze lantern to honor a deceased shogun. Instead, he offered to plant a row of Sugi trees (the Japanese name for Japanese Cedar) along the temple where the shogun was buried to protect him from the sun. These trees still stand today and many more are found near temples and shrines all over Japan.
Like Western Red Cedar, Japanese Cedar is known for its aromatic properties as well as being both rot and insect resistant. It is also used in many construction applications for its excellent strength-to-weight ratio which allows contractors to easily haul the lumber around the job site and trust it will hold up in their projects. Common uses of Japanese Cedar are ceiling panels, furniture, pillars, fences, and boats. Finishing options are limitless as Japanese Cedar takes well to stains and paints of all kinds or can be left to weather naturally over time.
Consumers tend to choose Japanese Cedar over Western Red Cedar due to its cheaper price, the fact that it is more uniform in color, and it has smaller knots. At Sound Cedar, we stock Japanese Cedar 1×6 fence boards in a 5/8″ or 3/4″ thickness. The first photo above shows a fence Robert made for a local non-profit using Japanese Cedar pre-stained fence boards.
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