There are a lot of factors involved in how long a cedar TV enclosure will last; but because they are constructed out of western red cedar, a tree that can live from 150-300 years on average, the wood itself will more than likely outlast the construction, but we are sure that it will last well past your lifetime. With the best material and methods of construction, they are made to last a very long time. Some minor repairs may be needed after years of use, but we guarantee you will be satisfied with this popular product that we have spent years perfecting and putting in many outdoor living spaces. Western red cedar, the material we use to make our cedar TV cabinets, is a widespread and popular tree in the Pacific Northwest region of North America. It has been widely introduced to other parts of the world and is a useful as well as an interesting plant. It grows in both a wild and a cultivated form in Canada and the United States. It’s the official tree of British Columbia. Believe it or not, Western red cedar, the material we use to build our cedar TV enclosures is not a true cedar. It has the scientific name and belongs to the cypress family, or the Cupressaceae. Cedars belong to the genus Cedrus and the pine family, or the Pinaceae. To focus and dig deeper into the plant’s real history, some people join the last two words of its name together and call it the western redcedar. The tree is most strongly associated with damp and sometimes foggy coastal forest area in the United States, and it is found from southern Alaska to Northern California. On the coast, it generally grows alongside and within and throughout the Douglas fir and western hemlock surrounding it. A separate population of the western red cedar tree can be found in damp areas in the interior of British Columbia. This population extends into Washington, Idaho, and Montana. If you have traveled to those areas, you have likely seen an abundance of these trees. The bark of the western red cedar’s trunk is red brown to grey. That is why you will notice that our cedar TV enclosures have a red color to them. It tends to be brown when the trunk spends most of its time in the shade and grey when it’s often exposed to the sun. The trunk of the western red cedar is often buttressed at the base. A buttress root branches from a tree’s trunk above ground and then extends into the ground. It provides extra support for the tree and sometimes extra nutrients as well. It is very strong, and why we choose it as our material of choice for building our cedar TV enclosures. The normal branches of the red cedar trunk divide repeatedly to form lots of ever narrowing branchlets throughout. The species name of the tree means “plaited”. The word likely refers to the complex arrangement of the leaf scales. The many leaves on the western red cedar tree range from yellow green to medium green in color, depending on the natural outdoor light. They are a lighter shade of green on their undersurface, which sometimes has the signature white markings that are so recognizable. A mature plant often has dead, orange leaves on the innermost part of its branches but can still look very beautiful and attractive due to the living leaves on the outermost part of the branches that you will see. The tree is sometimes irregularly shaped. It can reach a height of seventy feet tall. The western red cedar is a conifer and therefore reproduces by cones. The female ones are known as seed cones and the male ones as pollen cones. That is how you can tell them apart. The seed cones are much bigger than the pollen ones. Both types of cones develop on the same tree and are woody in appearance when mature. A pollen cone is about one to three millimeters long and is born at the tip of a row of leaves. As its name suggests, it releases pollen grains into the air. Each seed or female cone produces around three to six seeds on average. They have cute little small wings and are distributed to new areas by wind. Conifers don’t produce fruits. The seeds are released form the parent plant on their own. Both self and cross pollination occur in the western red cedar, the material used to create our cedar TV enclosures. The plant is capable of vegetative reproduction. Fallen branches sometimes develop roots, for example. The wood contains a type of acid, which can provoke asthma and allergies in sensitive people. This can be a major problem for people who work with the wood and is common enough to be considered an occupational hazard. Much like Cottonwood Trees, which shed white plantlike material in the spring that makes it look like it is snowing. Another acid that western red cedar produces can also provoke contact dermatitis, which is inflammation of the skin after touching a harmful substance. The condition generally involves a very uncomfortable redness and itching of the skin. The plant contains a chemical which produces a scent like menthol when the leaves are rubbed or crushed. Some people say that the smell of the crushed leaves is more like the pineapple fruit, but it isn’t for me. Western red cedar, that we use to make our cedar TV enclosures also contains a chemical which acts as a fungicide and a bactericide. This is one reason when the wood is often resistant to mold and decay. In earlier times, the western red cedar had both a cultural and a spiritual significance for the people of the First Nations. It’s still very valuable and sought after in their culture today. Coast Salish people have a lovely legend about the creation of the tree. There once existed a good man who gave his belongings to people in need. When he died, the Creator created the western red cedar on top of his burial site so that the people could continue to receive what they needed, because the tree could offer so much hope and healing to the people. Besides cedar TV enclosures, the wood of the western red cedar tree was once used to create totem poles, masks, canoes, paddles, spears, hooks for fishing, and longhouses. Fibers from the tree’s bark were used to create baskets, cords, ropes, and fishing nets. The western red cedar tree was always harvested with care. Only a section of bark was removed on a particular tree in order to keep it alive. Trees were cut down, but not excessively. Traditionally, a prayer was said, and the tree’s spirit thanked before it was cut. Western red cedar timber has many uses in construction today, like making pergolas and pavilions. It is highly valued for both its durability and its relatively light weight. The wood of a western red cedar is often used to make guitars. A lof of our wildlife also makes use of the tree. It is a very important source of food for deer, and bears, skunks, and raccoons build dens in cavities in the tree’s trunk. The tree also provides a good place for birds to nest. Now that you know everything there is to know about western red cedar, you know why we choose the long-lasting wood with so many great qualities to build our cedar TV enclosures.