August 7, 2017 What is Latex and How is it Used for Natural Bedding? Latex is a milky liquid found in 10% of flowering plants. Not to be confused with sap, latex serves mainly as a plant’s defense against herbivorous insects. Latex is a complex emulsion consisting of proteins, alkaloids, starches, sugars, oils, tannins, resins, and gums that coagulate when exposed to air. In most plants, latex is white (see image below), but some have yellow, orange, or scarlet latex. Latex Source Our latex is sourced from a plantation in South America and one in South East Asia. The latex we use for our Natural Latex Mattress comes from the Pará rubber tree (Hevea brasiliensis). The Pará rubber tree is a deciduous tree with green leaflets of three that can grow nearly 130 feet tall in the wild. A rubber tree begins producing latex after its sixth year of growth and can be continually tapped for latex for over 20 years. This tree can live up to 100 years in the wild, but on plantations these trees are generally cut down after about 30 years because their latex production begins to decline. The wood is then used to maintain the plantation or sold to furniture makers and the like. Latex for Natural Bedding Latex foam is a natural alternative to memory foam. Most synthetic foams use petroleum derivatives or formaldehyde, and off-gas toxic chemicals as they age. By contrast, latex foam is breathable, supportive, and will not release dangerous toxins. Our Natural Latex Mattress comes in a quilted encasement made with cotton sateen, cotton canvas, Premium Eco Wool batting, and Eco Wool needle punch. The added wool makes the mattress naturally flame resistant, without additional synthetic chemicals. Learn more about our Live & Dream Natural Latex Mattress. Here at Shepherd’s Dream, we sell 100% non-toxic, chemical-free wool mattresses. Order yours today and sleep your natural best! Try our all-natural mattresses with no harmful chemicals or toxins.