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Brand Talk: Cedar: Still on-trend after all these years

By / May 15, 2018

Cedar: On Trend by Weyerhaeuser Distribution

Since in the 1950s, cedar has remained one of the most popular materials for decking, siding and outdoor structures like pergolas, arbors and fences, and it continues to flourish in the marketplace. It is a naturally durable, stable, rot, decay and insect resistant wood product and is sourced from certified sustainably managed forests. Alternative materials claim its products look like real cedar only confirms its popularity. In short, there is no substitute — in aesthetic or maintenance — for authentic cedar.

Value Proposition

value proposition

western red cedar association

The 2018 Cost vs. Value report by Remodeling magazine reports that exterior work done on a home generated higher returns than interior renovations. This bodes well for dealers stocking and selling exterior building products, like cedar. Homeowners desire products that increase the home’s value and boost curb appeal while also enjoying the beauty of the product.

Today, cedar is used primarily for decking and siding said Paul Mackie, spokesperson for the Western Red Cedar Association. In the Cost vs. Value report, wood decking recouped a value of nearly 83% versus a composite deck recouped value of 64%. Cedar decking is also cool underfoot compared to composites as they tend to retain the heat making it uncomfortable for homeowners.

Trend: Knotty is in

knotty cedar

There’s a significant trend for knotty cedar used for exterior siding, soffits and trim as well as interior paneling. “Architects and consumers are recognizing the value proposition for using this type of cedar in projects,” notes Mackie.

This trend offers great gross margins for dealers while still providing great value to consumers. Showing customers the real cost of alternative materials versus real cedar and the choice most often is the latter. There are more aesthetic choices with knotty cedar as well — from elegant to rustic — and there are a variety of finishes to make any project unique.

Trend: Great outdoors

outdoor structures

“We see a large volume of cedar produced into timbers for outdoor structures,” said Mackie. In some regions, dealers display an arbor or other outdoor structure on a main road access and are seeing walk-in consumers come in and ask questions and then refer their builder or contractor to the dealer.

“Many of the homeowners in our region understand the value of cedar versus alternative products,” said Cody Dick, dealer sales representative, Weyerhaeuser Dallas Distribution. “It’s an appearance product and it will save a homeowner money over time with its low-maintenance.”

Trend: Bringing the outdoors inside

interior spaces

As the trend for indoor and outdoor synergy continues, cedar is a great addition to interior spaces. It adds warmth and texture and another revenue stream for dealers to consider for both residential and commercial applications.

Versatility and options

cedar is versatile

Cedar is a versatile product and is available in a range of patterns and grades from vertical to horizontal and in a variety of sizes and lengths. Cedar is available in even lengths between 8-foot and 20-foot. “We like to spend time with our customers and ask them what they’re doing with the job to help sell lengths that make more sense and add value,” said Dick. “For example, consider carrying varying lengths to not only add value but add to the bottom line depending on the project.”

Whether you are stocking clear or knotty grade cedar there’s no need for your customers to make compromises for the “real thing.” Cedar requires the same level of maintenance as alternative products while at the same time a sustainable and biodegradable product that radiates natural beauty.


Weyerhaeuser Distribution proudly supports the Western Red Cedar Lumber Association. For more information and resources, visit realcedar.com. To find the closest Weyerhaeuser distribution facility, please visit Weyerhaeuser.com/distribution.


Photographs: courtesy Ha2 Architectural Design, photo by JVL Photography / courtesy Western Red Cedar Lumber Association / courtesy Matt Fajkus Architecture, photo by Brian Mihealsick / courtesy Western Red Cedar Lumber Association / courtesy Taylor Kurtz Architecture + Design inc. in association with RDH Architects Inc., photo by Ema Peter / © Hasselblad H6D

Weyerhaeuser Distribution

For more information or to find the closest Weyerhaeuser Distribution facility, please visit Weyerhaeuser.com/distribution.