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Woolly pot

Klepsvik, Silje; Ralston, Birgitta; McKinnon, Kirsty; Toppe, Jørn Erik; Kleppe, Ida and Hermansen, Kristin (2023) Woolly pot. Bioregion Institute.

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Summary in the original language of the document

Throughout the 2022 season, Toppe cultivated summer flowers in Woolly Pots provided by BiOi. The plants were nurtured from small seedlings to fully matured, sellable summer flowers. Some of them were also planted outdoors into the soil to observe the decomposition process and monitor further growth. It was crucial to track how the pots retained their shape and to document plant and root growth.
Toppe conducted tests with different versions of Woolly Pots, that BiOi had given various forms of waterproofing, in the greenhouse, subjecting them to a regular flooding and draining watering process (ebb and flow). The project demonstrated the feasibility of cultivating summer flowers in Woolly Pots, suggesting their potential as a viable alternative to plastic pots in summer flower production. To optimize root growth, efforts must be directed towards facilitating easier root expansion through the pot by incorporating larger and/or additional holes in the pots. Additionally, measures should be taken to ensure the pot breaks down quickly after being planted out in soil.
For Woolly Pots to enter into automated production, improvements in homogeneity are necessary. Toppe owns a machine for soil filling of individual pots, requiring further optimization of the pot design for compatibility. Another type of machine for mechanical soil filling of multiple pots could potentially work with the current Woolly Pot design, only with minor modifications required. This specific machine was not available to the Project Team during the project period. NORSØK tested various wool pots, mainly pots for use in raising small plants. In the experiments, lettuce, broccoli and squash were raised in pots adapted to the plant species (plug pots for lettuce and
broccoli and larger plant pots for squash). The plants were planted out in the wool pots and compared to plants raised in plastic pots and planted out without a pot. Plant development and decomposition of the woolen pots were recorded. For all the plants in wool pots, there was 8 poorer root development and thereby poor or delayed plant development. For wool pots intended for plant raising, it is necessary to further develop pots that are shape-stable in the transplant period, while decomposing so quickly after planting that they do not inhibit plant development. Seven respondents with interest of small scale vegetable cultivation at home, participated and were given between four and eight pots for testing each, and they could choose how they wanted to use the pots. Enthusiasm around taking part in the experiment was great. When it came to implementation and reporting, there was less activity among the respondents. For some of them, the cultivation did not turn out quite as they had imagined. This is probably not the pot's "fault".
Preliminary figures show that four out of seven who have used the pots had grown plants in them. When things went wrong, it was due to drying out in two of the cases, and an attack by snails in one. According to the respondents who experienced this, dehydration is due to the fact that they did not get water for a long time. Whether the plants would have survived in plastic pots, we do not know. A parallel comparable test with plastic pots was not done.
There is great enthusiasm among those who brought out plants, and they declared a desire to use the pots again. In particular, they pointed out that they liked that the pots could be planted directly in the ground, even though several of the respondents also declared wanting to use the pots several times over. Enthusiasm around the pots is remarkably high. This indicates that the commercial potential is present. Is there a market for the wool pots among private individuals? Each year, private individuals spend large sums on cultivation in the garden. We tried to find out if pots made of wool can work when people use them in home gardening. Private individuals do not have the same watering and fertilizing regime as professionals. They have very different ways of doing everything, and the follow-up of the plants is often so-so. This places high demands on the material in the pots, and their functionality.

EPrint Type:Report
Keywords:Wool industry, ull
Agrovoc keywords:
wool industry
transplant production -> seedling production
Subjects: Environmental aspects > Air and water emissions
Research affiliation: Norway > NORSØK - Norwegian Centre for Organic Agriculture
Deposited By: McKinnon, Kirsty
ID Code:53071
Deposited On:03 Apr 2024 06:48
Last Modified:03 Apr 2024 06:48
Document Language:English
Refereed:Not peer-reviewed

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