Typical tree propagation containers force roots down through the soil until they reach the bottom wall of the tray. With nowhere left to go, the roots circle around each other into a tangled, unstable mess. This is the start of root defects – a long-standing and costly problem for growers across the industry.

Root defects include circling (girdling), diving, ascending or kinked roots. Studies show that these defects start at the early stages of tree propagation and they can’t be reversed down the line. 


A healthy tree develops lateral roots that extend as wide as the tree canopy. This healthy root structure supports the tree, ensures proper nutrient uptake, and gives a tree its normal life cycle. When lateral root growth is obstructed by the propagation tray, the roots begin circling back around the root ball. At this point, even if you shave, prune or air prune the roots, you can’t course correct to change their direction. Eventually they will create an unstable foundation and could eventually even kill the tree.


Wall-less and bottomless, RootSmart    helps prevent root defects by enabling those critical structural roots to develop in a healthy, lateral direction during the propagation stage, when it counts.


Choose RootSmart    for healthy root architecture.