Facts You Didn’t Know About Merbau Timber Decking


Here are a few fun facts about Merbau timber decking that you may not know.

  • Merbau timber is imported from Southeast Asia. The species Intsia bijuga grows naturally in much of the Pacific Rim region, particularly the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Pacific Islands and Papua New Guinea.
  • Merbau is a hardwood. Literally. It is one of the hardest and most durable timber species available. It is so tough and durable that special machinery — and a lot of saw blades — are needed to harvest, process and manufacture the timber.
  • Merbau is so tough even termites hate it and want nothing to do with it whatsoever.
  • The secret to Merbau timbers strength, durability and good looks is the abundance of natural oils within the wood. This natural oil also protects the timber from shrinking, cracking and splitting. However, the oil contains a water soluble compound called tannin that “bleeds” out and can stain surrounding areas for a period after it is cut. This bleeding out will continue for as long as tannin is present in the timber. That is why it pays to be wary of the surface over which you build and whether tannin bleed will stain it. If this is the case it makes sense to wash your timber extensively in an area that will not stain (ie over lawn) before you build
  • As tough as it is, Merbau timber is relatively easy to bend and turn. That is why it is used extensively in applications such as boat-building and furniture-making.
  • Some people have been known to be allergic to Merbau, especially when cutting and its sawdust flies freely in the air. Always wear protective gear when working with it and have allergy medication on hand.
  • When properly treated, Merbau timber decking will serve you for as long as half a century.


Get a FREE Quote for Your Pergola or Deck

Our online quoting tool lets you specify the measurements and other details about your planned pergola or deck. It then automatically generates an estimate for you.

Attached gable pergola with timber liningIronbark deck over sloping site with inbuilt stairs and stainless steel balustrade

Softwoods is a family owned South Australian company that has been trading for over 30 years.


We understand that making changes to your home is a major and important thing, and we take care to understand that every project that we handle should be done with as much care as we would expect is used in our own homes. Learn more about Softwoods.

We service, support and ship Australia-wide.

Use our design tool for a free quote or get in touch via email or phone
for a design or price on your project or materials.

Croydon, SA

573 Port Road
West Croydon SA 5008
Corner Rosetta Street

(08) 8346 1499

Modbury, SA

493 Wright Rd
Modbury SA 5092
Corner Wright & McIntyre Roads

(08) 8396 4044

Lonsdale, SA

28 O'Sullivan Beach Road
Lonsdale SA 5160
Corner Dyson Road

(08) 8384 5133

Perth, WA

Suite 15 Plaistowe Mews
102 Railway Street
West Perth WA 6005

1300 737 465