What is Caribbean Heart Pine (CHP)?
Caribbean Heart Pine gives you the type of floor that creates envy, intended or otherwise. Every single person that comes into your home will complement the floor while having no idea what type of pine they are admiring. This is one “luxury” purchase that will pay off in the future. Perhaps one of the most desirable traits of Caribbean Heart Pine is that its natural beauty becomes more evident with time. As the wood ages, its patina emerges providing a palette of rich, vibrant colors ranging from yellows to vibrant reds and coppers that deepen and intensify with age.
Great Substitute for more expensive antique pine
Caribbean Heart Pine contains the highest percentage of heartwood found in any new heart pine except for actual old growth, which is extremely hard to find and awfully expensive. So, with that in mind can you choose which of these boards is new and which are reclaimed? Tell them it came from a two-hundred-year-old Kentucky Horse barn; they will never know if you finish it right! CHP is a 25-million-dollar home right now- but the neighbors have no clue. We tell customers to call the floor whatever they want, antique for example. Fool your friends or make them jealous, that is up to you.
What are the grades of Caribbean?
The grades are not sorted based on heart content but rather knot frequency and the rustic grade will more color variation and character.
Rustic grade will have more frequent knots and the sapwood will generally be within this grade. The select or prime grade will have in frequent knots, a darker color, and a more consistent color range. Tongue and Groove and End Matched One-to-twelve-foot lengths with average 6-8’. Our rustic grade of CHP has more of its heartwood derived from sap and thus has more color variations and those gorgeous knots.
Prime grade of CHP is uniform in color over a range from golden brown to red brown heartwood to lighter brown sapwood. While both rustic and prime grades contain a minimum of 85% heartwood, rustic contains more sapwood (Knot) whereas prime grade consist of more heartwood. Prime grade is virtually clear except occasional small pin knots. Color is more consistent and harmonious, with a high degree of red heartwood and limited sapwood.
Why have I never heard of Caribbean Heart Pine?
This one is asked with every call, some directly ask the question, while others are trying to figure it out on their own. The answer is that Caribbean Heart Pine is not sold retail to consumers as Caribbean Heart Pine. It is sold under dozens of different names and grades. Most frequently as ¾ thick prefinished heart pine, with a variety of aging and distressing techniques, including Antique and ‘Antiqued’.
At Bayou Rustic we like the name Caribbean Heart Pine and although it requires more customer education, we believe that the person describing the materials should understand those materials. And what better way to understand something fully is to offer full disclosure; to call them what they really are; Caribbean Heart Pine.