Kelo – grand and unexpected

Kelo is used to describe ancient northern pines which have dehydrated while standing in place. Characteristic of this wood is the silvery gray shimmering surface and the reddish core. This precious wood develops through decades of dehydration in the dry coldness of the subarctic zones when the tree has stopped growing after some 300-400 years. After this, it is possible for the tree to stay upright for another few hundred years.

As the tree dehydrates, the bark sloughs off. The tree becomes silvery grey on the outside and reddish inside. Cracks and knotholes make the wood even more unique. The richer the red color of the core, the further north it has grown.

Kelo wood is almost always spiral grained, a feature which is more visible on the exterior than in the core. This type of grain makes for stiffer wood which is less likely to bend or deflect under a load. Kelo wood normally spirals counter clockwise – winding up from left to right from the bottom. Some say this phenomenon is possibly due to the Coriolis force or because of the sun’s position. This attribute is what makes a kelo log house less likely to warp or bend as compared with conventional log houses made from freshly cut wood.

Furniture made of kelo wood look rustic and make for a natural and comfortable ambience. While kelo wood is robust, it needs room to expand and contract and over the years it might develop cracks – which only add to the character of these furnishings!