Thatch is made from bundles of Kunai grass
(biological name: Imperata Cylindrica) locally named "alang-alang" for the construction of thatched
roofs. They come in panels.
For the houses made in Bali two types of Kunai grass
can be used. A quality that grows
on the island of Lombok, just East of Bali, and a quality that grows in Bali.
The indigenous grass that comes from the
island of Lombok has small but rigid leaf
blades. Bali grass is rougher and wider. An example is shown below. The
standard length of a panel is 2.80 meter. Width varies between 0.8 and 1.20
meter. For export purposes in containers we advise to apply a reduced length of
2.20 meter to fit and store as many panels as possible.
|Bali grass (6 months dried)
||Lombok grass (fresh cut)
The grass is dried for at least 6 months and non-seeding,
latched to Bangkirai battens (not bamboo, which will not stand the test of time !!!).
After production each and every panel is
visually checked by our supervisors and vigorously shaken to discard any
lose grass, dust and/or insects. Damaged panels or panels with too low a
grass covering will be rejected. Prior to shipment the
grass is treated with both Ethylene Oxide and Methyl Bromide as to kill any
hiding insects. This special treatment will earn you the ETO Certificate
without which you will not be able to import thatch into your country.
Worse,....all thatch will be destroyed.
|Grass in bundles
||Example of thatched roof (inside)
Panels can either be woven with white thread or
Thatched roofing is an ideal product for roofs of
gazebos, bungalows, villas, etc. It does not only have an attractive look,
but it also has the capability to insulate. Depending on the height of the
roof, internal temperatures can be reduced by 10°
When laid by a professional thatcher, a thatched roof
will not leak (normally the roof pitch is some 35 degrees or more).
Maintenance is easy. In Indonesia thatched
roofs are hardly maintained, provided the roof is kept free from debris
(fallen leaves and bird nests removed). Due to the humid nature major maintenance is
required only after some 10 years of installation. After some 15 years a complete
overhaul may be necessary. In dryer countries life time will increase (there
are records of some 20 years).
Important information for our
customers in both Hawaii and Australia
Thatch requires a special approach for use in Hawaii and
is typically not allowed in residential construction. Australia has very strict import rules and regulations (AQIS). We only use non-seeding alang-alang (minimum 6 months dried), while
this old non-seeding grass is thoroughly fumigated with Ethylene Oxide and
Methyl Bromide prior
to shipment, strict regulations exist in almost all countries.
No mistake shall be made between a
Phytosanitary Certificate and an ETO Certificate, as follows:
Fumigation with Ethylene
Oxide is extremely expensive in Bali due to the monopoly of only one company
(USD. 55 per m3 container space) (*). It may therefore be worthwhile to
investigate whether fumigation can be done at destination (most probably for
a fraction of the price you pay in Bali). To this end you need to contact
the Ministry of Agriculture in your country.
NOTE: We do NOT sell
thatch for export. This page only provides technical information about the
thatch that we use for our homes and gazebos.
(*) USD. 1,760 for a 20 ft
container and USD. 3,690 for a 40 ft container.