Embracing the Natural Beauty of Weathered Ipe Wood

In the world of outdoor decking, Ipe wood has long been celebrated for its exceptional durability, resistance to the elements, and natural beauty. However, a growing trend among homeowners and commercial property owners is to allow their Ipe wood to weather naturally, transforming into a stunning silver-grey color. This aesthetic choice is gaining popularity, and for good reason.

The Natural Aging Process of Ipe Wood

Ipe wood, often referred to as Brazilian walnut, is renowned for its rich, deep brown hues when freshly installed. Over time, exposure to sunlight and the elements causes the wood to undergo a natural aging process. This results in a gradual transformation to a sophisticated silver-grey patina. This process can take several months to a few years, depending on the climate and level of sun exposure.

Gray Ipe Decking
Weathered Ipe Wood Deck

Why Let Ipe Wood Weather?

  1. Timeless Aesthetic: The silver-grey color of weathered Ipe wood offers a timeless, elegant look that complements a wide range of architectural styles and landscaping designs. It blends seamlessly with natural surroundings, providing a harmonious and understated beauty.
  2. Low Maintenance: Allowing Ipe wood to weather naturally reduces the need for regular maintenance. Unlike other decking materials that may require frequent staining or sealing to maintain their appearance, weathered Ipe requires minimal upkeep. This makes it an attractive option for those seeking a hassle-free outdoor space.
  3. Durability: Ipe wood is one of the hardest and most durable woods available. Even as it weathers, it retains its structural integrity and resistance to rot, insects, and decay. This ensures that your deck will remain functional and beautiful for decades.
  4. Sustainability: Choosing to let Ipe wood weather naturally is also an environmentally friendly option. It eliminates the need for chemical treatments and finishes, reducing the environmental impact of your decking project.

The Trend of Grey Colored Decking

In recent years, grey-colored decking has become a popular trend in composite decking products. Manufacturers offer a range of grey hues designed to mimic the look of weathered wood. While these products can provide a similar aesthetic, they come with certain drawbacks.

  1. Heat Retention: One significant disadvantage of composite decking is its tendency to retain heat. On hot, sunny days, composite decks can become uncomfortably hot, even to the point of causing burns to bare feet. This is a major consideration for homeowners and commercial property owners who might use their decks in bare feet or have pets that walk on the deck.
  2. Synthetic Appearance: While composite decking has improved in terms of mimicking natural wood, it can still lack the authentic look and feel of genuine Ipe wood. The unique grain patterns and texture of Ipe are difficult to replicate, making natural wood a preferred choice for those seeking authenticity.

Weathered Wood Finish for Ipe Wood

Many of our customers have come to us looking to find a way to accelerate the weathered Ipe wood look. Ipe can take awhile to fade from the rich brown to the silver grey especially under covered porch roofs.

We now have a water based finish that’s easy to apply available with a grey tint to mix in that will give Ipe wood the beautiful silver grey look from day one. The DeckWise company has created an excellent finish called WiseCoat that is available in clear and you can add a colorant tint of your choice.

For those seeking the weathered Ipe wood look simply choose the gray tint and mix it into your gallon of clear DeckWise WiseCoat and apply it to your Ipe deck for an immediate gray look.

Ipe wood with DeckWise WiseCoat applied with the gray tint

Making the Choice

For those who appreciate the beauty of natural materials and are looking for a durable, low-maintenance decking solution, weathered Ipe wood is an excellent choice. Its elegant silver-grey color, combined with the unmatched durability of Ipe, offers a timeless and practical solution for outdoor spaces.

In contrast, while grey-colored composite decking may appeal to some for its low maintenance and consistent appearance, the heat retention and synthetic feel can be significant drawbacks. Homeowners and commercial property owners must weigh these factors when making their decision.


The trend of allowing Ipe wood to weather naturally to a beautiful silver-grey color is here to stay. It provides a sustainable, low-maintenance option that showcases the natural beauty of this exceptional wood. As more people seek to create outdoor spaces that are both functional and aesthetically pleasing, weathered Ipe wood stands out as a superior choice. Whether for residential decks or commercial applications, the timeless appeal of weathered Ipe is undeniable.

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