Salvaged Barn Wood

Why Use Old Growth Wood

At Reclaim Everything, an Architectural Salvage Company, of Northport, Long Island, we know that not all reclaimed wood is created equal…literally. If the wood is from a structure built in the 1940s or a structure built in the 1910s, the wood can be very different. Most structures built before 1920 use “old growth wood” which is higher quality wood from America’s first forests.

What are “old growth” forests?


Old Growth Forests

Old growth forests are full of trees that have matured for hundreds of years. It takes North American forests to develop old-growth characteristics in one or two generations of trees, which is anywhere from 150–500 years.

Trees replanted after the 1920s have not yet reached maturity to have the same benefits as old growth trees. It is also likely that they were not even given the chance to fully mature and may have already been harvested for lumber and another generation replanted again.

Old growth trees are magnificent: they stood tall for hundreds of years and provided the habitat and ecology for millions of living creatures throughout that life. Then man came and used the wood of those trees to create homes, barns, and other structures for communities across our country. As times are changing and our needs as people too, rebuilding must occur. But that does not mean we must demolish and start from scratch. Since the raw materials from these buildings were of such high quality we can reuse them again. We’ve found the furniture we’ve made from reclaimed wood looks great and lasts long.

What are the benefits of old growth trees?


Wood that’s over 100 years old is said to be more durable, because of the extra time it received to properly mature. New aged wood doesn’t’t get the opportunity to fully mature to provide the same structural support.


Less maintenance for furniture:
Most reclaimed items require less maintenance, because they’ve already been worn and weathered through years of life.


Difficult to damage:
It’s more difficult to stain or damage wood that’s aged over the years. This of course means that owning a beautiful piece of reclaimed wood furniture is also practical for families who may worry about wear and tare of their furniture from frequent use.


Because the trees had hundreds of years to grow their wood is exceptionally beautiful with deep grains and rich colors. The wood is also sought after for its patina (a natural gloss that occurs on antique wood), tight growth rings, and varied textures.

These characteristics of old world growth are why we at Reclaim Everything use only this kind of wood. Since it’s the best, it is the only way to create the best quality furniture and provide top quality lumber for our customers. To learn more about our services or make a purchase please contact us today.