Research has shown that a problem in pot-in-pot (PIP) production systems has been the growth of roots out of the planted container, through holes in the holder pot and into the surrounding soil. A study was conducted with Lagerstroemia indica x fauriei ‘Acoma’ to evaluate methods for reducing rooting-out problems in a PIP production system. The products tested were Biobarrier™, a geotextile fabric impregnated with trifluralin; Root Control™ fabric bag material; and Spin Out™, a commercial formulation of copper hydroxide (7.1%) in latex paint. Biobarrier™ reduced plant height, shoot dry weight, percent root dry weight outside of the planted container and total biomass compared to the non-treated control. For the control, 7.1% of the total root dry weight was found between the holder pot and planted container compared to 0.2% for the Biobarrier™ treatment. When the holder pot and planted container or the planted container and Root Control™ fabric were both treated with Spin Out™, plant height and shoot dry weight were reduced. Spin Out™ reduced root circling on the sidewalls of the planted containers but not on the bottom of the containers. All treatments except the control reduced rooting-out to a degree which allowed for the manual harvesting of the planted container from the holder pot after seven months in the field.

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Author notes

Technical assistance of Bruce Tucker, financial assistance of Griffin Corporation, Valdosta, GA, statistical assistance of Ben Mullinix and donation of plant material by Wight Nurseries, Cairo, GA, Biobarrier™ by Reemay, Inc., Old Hickory, TN and Root Control™ fabric by Root Control, Inc., Oklahoma City, OK is acknowledged and gratefully appreciated.

2Assistant Professor.