Black Locust (Robinia Pseudoacacia) is the strongest and most rot resistant wood indigenous to North America. It makes an incredibly resilient and durable decking material that will remain beautiful and withstand years of outdoor exposure.
Building with Black Locust is also a sound environmental choice. Black Locust grows faster than any other known hardwood tree. Unlike Brazilian Ipe, Black Locust does not contribute to tropical deforestation. Black Locust is also known as false acacia, or Chinese teak (due to its resemblance to teak).
What About Carpenter Bees?
Carpenter Bees are a major issue every spring and the issue is moving North each year. They mow through composites like Trex and Pressure Treated Pine and Douglas Fir (PT) and Western Red Cedar, too. Only dangerous chemical pesticides will kill them.
Carpenter Bees drill perfectly round holes through wood, so as to plant larva inside the decking and posts. Sometimes these larva hatch, but more often than not, woodpeckers dig the larva out as food, creating even bigger holes, often causing structural issues in the process.
Black Locust is one of the hardest, strongest, and most insect-resistant woods on Earth. Its natural characteristics make it impervious to Carpenter Bees, even without stains or insecticides. As Carpenter Bees take over North America, look to Black Locust (as well as Eastern Juniper, Sassafras and Black Walnut) for Decking, Posts, Siding, Fascia and Soffit Boards.