Rubber wood is a light-colored medium-density tropical hardwood obtained from the Pará rubber tree (Hevea brasiliensis), usually from trees grown in rubber plantations. Rubber wood is commonly advertised as an “environmentally friendly” wood, as it makes use of plantation trees that have already served a useful function. Rubber wood has very little tendency to warp or crack.
The name rubber wood invokes a variety of misconceptions as to its features and to its durability. Rubber wood (also called Parawood in Thailand) is the standard common name for the timber of Hevea brasiliensis. In fact, rubber wood is one of the more durable lumbers used in the manufacturing of today’s home furnishings. Rubber wood has very little shrinkage making it one of the more stable construction materials available for furniture manufacturing. Like maple, rubber wood is a sap producing species. In the case of maple, it is sap; in the case of rubber wood, it is latex.
Rubber wood produces all the latex used in the world for all rubber based products. There is one more important feature of rubber wood that is very important in today’s world. Rubber wood is the most ecologically “friendly” lumber used in today’s furniture industry. After the economic life of the rubber tree, which is generally 26-30 years, the latex yields become extremely low and the planters then fell the rubber trees and plant new ones. So, unlike other woods that are cut down for the sole purpose of producing furniture, rubber wood is used only after it completes its latex producing cycle and dies. This wood is therefore eco-friendly.