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Forestry FAQ's

This FAQ is by no means comprehensive. If you have additional questions please contact us toll free or by email.




What should I do before I plant tree seedlings?

  • Contact a local forestry professional for advice in developing a stewardship plan for your property.

  • Prepare the site for tree planting.

  • Purchase quality seed or seedlings from reputable, local sources for best results.


What is a Treeshelter?
Treeshelters are translucent tubes that create a ‘mini-greenhouse’ environment around single tree seedlings while offering protection from animal damage. Tubex Treeshelters are usually attached to stakes and should provide support and protection after planting, shortening establishment periods and increasing survival rates.


Why use Tubex Treeshelters?
Use Tubex Treeshelters to protect your valuable hardwood seedling from animal browse damage and accelerate initial height growth.


How do Tubex Treeshelters Work?
The Tubex Treeshelter creates a warm and humid microclimate around a tree seedling. The net effect of this is to lessen the tendency of the air to draw water from the plant. Further gains follow from the avoidance of factors that cause the stresses associated with planting out, such as bright sunlight and dry winds. Numerous studies have shown that even on the hottest days of summer the air inside the tube remains very humid, enabling the plant to continue to function long after those outside have shut down. Tubex Treeshelters can offer a range of valuable benefits to anyone planting trees, particularly where a challenging environment may threaten the success of the project.


Which size Tubex treeshelter should I use?
Choose the size treeshelter based on the level of protection you need. Choose the 2 or 3-foot treeshelters to protect your valuable hardwood seedlings from rabbit or mouse damage. Choose the 4 or 5-foot treeshelter to protect your seedlings from deer browse damage.


How long should a treeshelter last?
The prime objective should be to design a shelter that survives long enough to do its job successfully. This means determining the formulation that will ensure it lasts at least through the initial establishment phase. This period will vary according to the species planted and the exact nature of the site, so in many instances the shelter will be intact when it is no longer required. 


The unpredictable climatic conditions in many parts of the world make it even more difficult to determine material stability across a range of locations. Therefore during the early 1990’s Tubex introduced its unique Laserline technology into the manufacturing process to ensure that the tubes would burst once the tree had filled the tube rather than relying on the material composition to break down in all eventualities.


What is the Laserline?
The Laserline is a series of laser-generated perforations forming a line of weakness down the length of the tube. Once the tree has filled the tube it puts pressure on this line of weakness and bursts allowing the tree to split open the tube. These tubes should still be left as long as is practical to continue to protect the tree from animal damage.


When the tree fills the Tubex Treeshelter this is a clear demonstration that it has been successful in achieving the main aims – protecting the young tree from damage, encouraging high survival rates and accelerating growth.


Which tree seedling should I install the treeshelters on?
Install the Tubex Treeshelters on, the best quality seedlings available, usually your valuable hardwood seedlings or your crop trees.


What should I do after I have planted my seedlings and installed my treeshelters?
Practice vigorous weed control for at least a 3 year period. Treeshelters are great for protecting seedlings, but to maintain growth, weed control is an absolute necessity. Use the VisPore Tree Mats, herbicides or wood chip mulches where feasible and cost effective. Check your seedlings periodically – at a minimum annually. Take inventory of what grew well and what did not. Avoid litter by thoughtfully disposing of fragments as shelters naturally break down.


What about the degradation process and disposing of waste?
Tubex Treeshelters photo-degrade naturally over a period of time dependent upon the amount of sunlight that the shelter receives. The shelters will begin to disintegrate from the top downwards into small pieces that are easily incorporated into the soil. This material will slowly break down further into tiny fragments. This pattern contrasts markedly with those shelters made from folded sheet, which often split at the corners to produce large strips of plastic that can blow around until they are caught up in vegetation. The composition of the fragments of Tubex need cause no worries.


Tubex Treeshelters are made from polypropylene, which is a chemically non-reactive and biologically inert substance. It is not harmful to animals or plants. Polypropylene does not contain halogens, as is the case with PVC and other chloro- or fluoro- compounds.


How do I install VisPore Tree Mats and Rolls?
Install VisPore Tree Mats with the “shiny”, smooth side up, duller, “rougher” side down. They provide three years of weed control.


When do I install the Right Start Fertilizer Packets and the Mycorrhizal Inoculum?
It is best to drop fertilizer and mycorrhizal inoculum packets into the bottom of the planting hole at the time of planting.