IBN Kwekerijen was looking for a better way to root its conifer cuttings; preferably one that would also immediately prevent the growth of liverwort. The answer lay in a unique concept, which the company devised with their soil supplier and Green Products. “The composition is ideal for rooting, and thanks to the top layer, there is hardly any moss formation or excessive rooting”, says Frank van den Bergh, Director of Kwekerijen at IBN.
IBN employs people who are at a disadvantage in the labor market. With over a quarter century of experience in propagating hardy garden plants, the nursery has become a major player in the market.
A medium for effective water drainage
IBN first set about improving and cleaning up its water system itself. “But with an assortment of over 1,000 crops, you can’t water too selectively,” Frank explains. “We would especially benefit from a medium that could drain water effectively. We already know the benefits of the paper plug, but in conifers, its use is less common.”
However, the many benefits of GreenPlugs won IBN over. “Air and water are crucial for rooting,” says Frank. “The cutting must not petrify nor drown; you can prevent this with a paper plug. I think our rooting success rate improved by about 10%.”
Green Products added another vital advantage: the combination of a topdress layer and an ideal, homogeneous plug composition. This makes the Combi GreenPlug perfect for conifer cuttings, as well as other crops. The unique topdress material actually prevents moss formation. At the same time, the material sinks down the GreenPlug, creating a natural bridge on the tray edges – this significantly reduces cell to cell root hopping, resulting in plugs that are easier to handle and faster to transplant, both in manual potting and with potting robots.
To this day, Green Products continues to be an active participant in improving IBN’s cultivation process. “All in all, we’re getting a better, fuller plug,” Frank says. “Moreover, we can better control PH and EC. An investment has to pay for itself, and with all these factors combined, that’s absolutely the case.”
- Significantly less moss formation
- Strong reduction in root hopping
- Transplanting can be done sooner and faster
- Far less failure while transplanting
- Better quality of young plant