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Tell Me About Root Pouch

Root Pouch is a family-based company head quartered in Hillsboro, Oregon USA  with their partnership manufacturing facility, an extension of the Root Pouch company, located in China.

With extensive knowledge and experience in the horticultural industry they have developed a geotextile fabric that has no rival in the industry for its technical qualities. The patented fabrics are all BPA free and UV resistant, US Food and Alcohol Administration (US FDA) certified as food safe and manufactured in a safe and clean environment.

Root Pouch fabric planting containers are made out of recycled water bottles some ranges contain  natural fibers preventing plastic from going to landfills and oceans.

 

                                2019 (1000 metric tons of plastic water bottles used)

                                      2020 (Goal to use 1200 metric tons)

The concept behind the pouch

It's been a little over 10 years since the founding of the company and over 1 million of these state-of the-art bags are shipped monthly across the globe to growing industries.
Often mistaken for an Australian company due to the kangaroo logo it came about when the four family member founders drew on this emblem to to represent the qualities of the fabric as providing a pouch-like environment that offers plants unsurpassed plant health, just as the kangaroo's pouch is known to protect and nourish its young as it grows!

Here at Up On The Rooftop we loved the bag so much and saw incredible growth and healthy plants that I decided to bring the product to Australia and have forged a great relationship with the global company. 

Q: What makes Root Pouch different from the rest?

A fabulous BLOG explains the remarkable difference

  

Q: Who is "Root Pouch" and where is the company located?   

For more information about the US based company Read More...

Q: Why has the kangaroo logo been adopted by the US company?

It's been a little over 10 years since the founding of the US-based company and over 1 million of these state-of the-art bags are shipped monthly across the globe to growing industries.
Often mistaken for an Australian company due to the kangaroo logo it came about when the four family member founders drew on this emblem to to represent the qualities of the fabric as providing a pouch-like environment that offers plants unsurpassed plant health, just as the kangaroo's pouch is known to protect and nourish its young as it grows!
Here at Up On The Rooftop we loved the bag so much and saw incredible growth and healthy plants that I decided to bring the product to Australia and have forged a great relationship with the global company. The US brand Root Pouch is produced in their partnered manufacturing plant in China. This organisation is an extension of the Oregon-based conpany.

Q: Why does the Root Pouch Company test the bags for food safety?

The US company's understanding is that at this time the US federal government does not view growing Cannabis (for which Root Pouch is the bag of choice in the US) as a federally legalized act and has not yet required that they meet FDA standards test 21 CFR 177.1630 (contact with food, drugs, biologics and cosmetics). The FDA requirements are of course inevitable since it is important that container manufacturers create safe non-toxic containers for the use of growing plants that will be consumed by humans.

Root Pouch believes it is important to our customers that our containers have been tested and have passed safety test for contact with food. We have decided not to wait until it is required and have taken it upon ourselves to ensure that the containers we produce are free of harmful contaminants that may effect the quality and safety of the plants grown in them.

All our grow bags have undergone rigorous testing by BACL (Global testing and certification lab) in accordance with FDA contact test 21 CFR 177.1630

Q: Will the Root Pouch Bags change colour over time?

The fabric may develop a lovely patina over time, this is not the discolouring of the fabric itself but the result of of the soil, nutrients and fertilisers as well as, in some case, salt and chemicals in the water itself. This growth is normal for a breathable material. If left in a damp, shaded position mosses or lichen might develop. none of these colourings or growth affect the functioning or longevity of the bags and adds a natural organic patina to the surface. Our customers love the aged look as the bags blend well with the surrounding garden.

Q: How do I clean the surface of the bags?

Depending on your potting soil mix you might see a white coating that looks a little like mildew. This is most likely salt and minerals that built up over time from the nutrients and/or water being used in the Root Pouch grow bag and growths enjoying the nutrients and damp. Lichen or algae/moss can also grow on the outside of the fabric if conditions have been damp and if there is shade cast on the bag. You can lightly scrub the sides of the bag while they are being used with vinegar scrubbed on with a soft brush, if you want to clean up the look. Most of our customers love the aged patina that sits beautifully against other pots and greenery. The growths are nothing to be concerned about.

If your bags are being emptied after the growing season the bags can be placed in laundry bags and put into the washing machine on a cold cycle with laundry soap that does not contain fabric softener. Washing the bags in this manner will over time make the fabric feel less ridged. 

Q: Will the Root Pouch bags drain water?

The grow bags are made of fabric and by virtue of this are porous. This is one of the many wonderful benefits of the Root Pouch grow bags - they provide excellent drainage which is very important to root health. As such, if the surface on which the bags will be placed needs protection from staining, exactly as you would a hard container with drainage holes, you may consider placing a planter tray under the bag, however, as with a container with drain hole, please ensure that the bag is not sitting in a constant pool of water as this will prevent the effective draining of the soil.

Q: Can Root Pouch grow bags be used in hydroponic situations?

Yes most definitely. A game-changer in the hydroponic medicinals industry, the bags are durable and offer the same level of root health  under hydroponic conditions.

Q: What are Root Pouch Boxer Pots made of?

Root Pouch degradable plant pots are made of PET derived from recycled plastic water bottles. This material is melted back to a sterile liquid state then spun into fibers that are mixed with natural fibers which degrade over time. Because the plastic is re-melted it is once again sterile making it a great choice for growing plants for human consumption. Root Pouch does not use new petroleum as do some other fabric companies, so Root Pouch does not contain any toxins. It is BPA free and UV resistant.

Q: Are Root Pouch bags degradable?

Degradability is the ability of the fabric to in part become structurally unsound and allow the roots of the plant to freely penetrate into the surrounding soil. The amount of degradability and the duration of time taken to reach different stages of this are all determined on the following.

Density of the fabric along with the contents of the fibers used in the actual fabric and the percentages used of PET verses natural fibers. This also determines the tinsel strength of the fabric itself which changes as time elapses when the fabric is exposed to soil on both sides of the fabric, which allows the degradation of the biodegradable natural fibers mixed in with the PET.

Of course the actual PET in the mixture is not biodegradable and does not biodegrade. When discussing non-degradable fabrics it is important to distinguish between PET, not bio-degradable meaning never breaking down, and “the fabric lasting forever.”

Nothing lasts forever, saying it lasts forever would imply the pots could be used over and over forever always achieving the optimal results they were originally intended to produce. Not even a standard plastic pot will last in the environment more than a couple of seasons when exposed to the elements.

It does not disappear but it will lose its tensile strength and therefore not be as good as new nor can it be used for its original intentions forever. What we prefer saying is if the pot ends up in a land fill, a degradable pot will end up being a fraction of the carbon foot print of its counterpart plastic pot.

A non-degradable pot is designed to not to allow roots to penetrate freely for many years and not only is it a far smaller carbon foot print than its plastic counterpart, it itself was made from recycled plastic bottles and not new petroleum so it is a “post-consumer product”. Better for the planet, better for the plant! The actual contents of the PET versus natural fibers used or the way we are able to combine the two is a closely guarded secret of Root Pouch and is the reason we are able to offer degradability.

Q: Are Root Pouch fabrics safe?

Root Pouch manufactures all of it’s own fabric, enabling us to determine the density, porosity and impregnability. Controlling and selecting the raw material that is used in its creation.

Each fabric is designed for a particular function. All of our fabrics are clean and safe.Developed to meet safety and sanitary requirements to better ensure a safe product for human applications, Root Pouch fabrics are designed to support use for growing materials that come in contact with products to be consumed.

Our fabrics have undergone and passed rigorous testing by global, international testing & certification laboratory in accordance with FDA contact test 21 CFR 177.1630. [contact with food, drugs, biologics & cosmetics ]. They are BPA free and UV resistant.

Q: Why Root Pouch vs other Fabric containers?

Root Pouch is the only company that uses both recycled plastic fibers along with natural fibers, vegetable fibers or bamboo. These natural fibers mixed into the netting of the fabric will retain moister much more evenly around the pot. While allowing the fabric to breath it is also now helping in cooling down the plant in summer as well as allowing the plant to stay warm in the winter, similar to a blanket surrounding the tender roots. Due to the natural fibers within the structure the fabric will have different tensile strengths depending on the density of the fabric. Root Pouch makes seven different densities of fabric depending on the pot strength that is required. Regardless of the density the pots are guaranteed to always hold the weight that is required for that size of container.

Q: Why use fabric pots?

The main reason fabric pots are so widely used is not to create a stronger pot, but to create a better pot, that provides a breathable healthy growing environment. Fabric pots, unlike traditional black plastic pots, allow water and air to flow through its structure nourishing the root of the plant. It also does not allow the plants roots to circle once they meet the resistance of the wall of the pot. Instead, through a couple of different means, the fabric causes the plant to send out new fibrous roots rather than circle and harm the plant.

Q: What type of stitching is used for the Root Pouch containers?

The type of stitch we use is called an Industrial Lock Stitch. Our side seam stitching is nicknamed in the clothing industry as a FrenchStitch Seam. It will not unravel when pulled. The Industrial Lock Stitch gets its name because of its industrial use in outdoor products where unravelling is a concern for the overall wear and tear of a product. Other fabric companies use what is called an Overlock Stitch, which is used widely in the garment industry. The problem with this stitch is that it will easily unravel when pulled. This stitch is commonly used in items such as clothing where its functionality is more aesthetic than utilitarian

Q: Can I wash my Root Pouch bags?

Yes, the Root Pouch grow bags are washable - we recommend washing them in cold water with an earth-friendly detergent, and letting them air dry. Just as with any porous pot, the minerals and salts in your potting mix may stain the outer surface over time, and moss or lichen builds up if placed in a damp position. Use vinegar to gently scrub the stains away.

 

 

Q: Are Root Pouch containers UV Resistant?

Yes, Root Pouch fabrics are resistant to UV rays.

Q: Are Root Pouch fabrics BPA free?

Yes. The fabrics are BPA free and do not leach toxins, they are made of the #1 PETE recycled plastic, that is used in drinking water bottles,and soda bottles.

Q: Do the elements, snow and ice, affect the fabric & cause it to break down?

Snow and ice have no more effect on Root Pouch fabric then they do on traditional plastic containers. Keep in mind a plant in a fabric Root Pouch container will fair the extreme cold far better than any other container type. Just like a human, what would help a person in sub-zero cold or wind? If they were wrapped in plastic or wrapped in fabric? Plants and plant roots are the same. Fabric allows the heat given off by plants to be contained and keep the plant warmer in the Winter… and cooler in the Summer. Root Pouch fabric pots when set can-tight (pots touching each other) will exchange heat between them. The most threatening thing, snow and ice bring is weight. Plants that are branched loaded down with the weight of ice and snow will break. This goes for plants in fabric, plastic and even in landscape.

Q: Do planted Root Pouches need to be treated differently over winter?

Root Pouch deep winter prep and care is basically the same as any container. All pots should can be placed with each pot touching the other in a protected area, hoop house or cold shed is great for overall winter protection to consolidate space in an enclosure. Plants should be set in a pyramid. Bottom row each pot touching each other, next row on top between plants or trunks. 

If houses are not available and plants are to stay in the yard. Then again treat same as you would if the pots were in plastic.

Each new order of Root Pouch grow bags includes an information  sheet.