Lacebark Inc.

The Containers



Root System Basics
slide show narrated by Dr. Carl Whitcomb

Container Evolution

In his early research projects, Dr. Whitcomb tested numerous container designs.  Milk cartons (today “tree bands”) only prune roots at the bottom, creating few side branches. Containers with vertical slots still result in circling and excessive water loss. These and other designs were rejected until root-pruning containers evolved to the current line of patented RootMaker® products.

 •  1968- Grew trees in bottomless milk cartons.
     This design only prunes at the bottom.

 •  1970- Tested slotted container. . 
     Very little root pruning, high water loss
•  1973- Pot-in-pot experiment.
    Large circling, escaping roots.

 •  1973- Root pruning via copper toxicity.
     Long term toxicity issues.
•  1983- Evaluated a porous fabric container above ground. 
    Inconsistent root pruning, root escape.

 •  1984- Patented root tip trapping container, no holes.  
     Inefficient pruning, still some circling.

 •  1985- Patented first version of fabric in-ground container.

 •  1989- Patented the original RootMaker® 4-pack.  

 •  1990- After several years of testing, released the improved “tree bag”, the Knit Fabric in-ground container.

•  1990- Patented RootBuilder® expandable container.

•  1996- Patented RootMaker® II design for 105, 60, 32, and 18 cell trays.

•  1997- Cinder block bags.
•  2003- White, soft-sided, bi-layer RootTrappers®.
•  2004- Released RootBuilder® II design.

•  2009- Awarded patent for RootBuilder® II.

•  2012- Awarded patent for RootTrapper II.

RootMakers® create more radial, active root tips than any other container system and are now the preferred root production tool of nurseries around the world.

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