TEAK (Tectona grandis Linn) Golden teak, known as Mai Suk Tong in Thailand, is the most pest-resistant of hardwoods and one of the world's most valuable timbers, recognized for its unique durability and matchless beauty. It was considered a 'royal' tree by the kings of Thailand and Burma, who used it in building their most cherished palaces and temples. Teak withstands all types of weather, is resistant to the harshest chemicals, and is unaffected by fungi, rot, and termites. Unlike other woods, it isn't discolored by contact with metals, and has an exceptionally pronounced grain best accentuated by transparent varnishes. Distribution: Native to southeast Asia, Teak is today widely grown on plantations throughout tropical Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Uses: For centuries, the mainstay of the shipbuilding industry. The decks of the Titanic were of teak, and remain as good today as the day she sank in 1912. Teak is also widely used in the oil industry: as well as being highly resistant to fire, it is one of the very few timbers that can cope with the punishing heat of the desert. Extensively used in furniture and cabinetmaking, flooring, and garden furniture.