Aiming towards a more sustainable forestry industry with cutting-edge technology

OptiBoost for cuttings – improving survival rate and rooting of cuttings

Cuttings provide many advantages for growers. Cuttings can speed up the propagation process as well as the overall production time of annuals and perennials. Rooted cuttings can be stuck into a container, which makes transplanting much faster. That in its turn also lowers labor costs.

Forestry, according to Wikipedia, is “the science and craft of creating, managing, planting, using, conserving and repairing forests,woodlands, and associated resources for human and environmental benefits.” 

Forestry is important in many aspects, trees provide numerous environmental, social, and economic benefits for people. Forest management however has a substantial impact on our environment and ecosystems. Thankfully, it is a business where much progress is done and more underway. One of the applications of modern forestry is reforestation, in which trees are planted and tended in a given area. 

It is within this field the OptiBoost technology makes a significant impact, and we will tell you how below. 

OptiBoost for cuttings – improving the survival rate and rooting of cuttings 

Reforestation is a way to compensate for the timber used. By restocking and planting new trees, climate change can be reduced, ecosystems rebuilt, and resources used in a more circular way. 

A cutting is taken from a tree, it is placed in a nursery and will hopefully survive, root and grow. A biological process that sometimes fails. Some cuttings die instantly, others won’t root and some won’t grow. The loss of cuttings in this process is quite severe, depending on what type of tree and time of the year, the loss can be anywhere between 25-50%. 

Improving this process is of course, extremely valuable. Luckily, this is exactly what the OptiBoost for cuttings technology has shown to do. 

The value of vacuum impregnation in the propagation of Eucalyptus cuttings 

The OptiBoost technology uses vacuum impregnation (VI) to improve cuttings’ survival rate and rooting. Tests have also been made to prolong the shelf-life of plant cuttings prior to planting. The vacuum created optimizes for our self-developed nutrient solution to impregnate the cuttings. This nutrient solution is based on the third generation of nanotechnology. 

Le gaspillage peut être minimisé puisque les variétés invendues peuvent être stockées et vendues avec retard lorsque la demande du marché augmente. La méthode OptiBoost® améliore également la qualité des boutures. 

The general appearance, turgidity, and structure after storage, as well as the development and rooting after planting, are crucially enhanced. 

Increased rooting and survival rate at Mondi in South Africa by 20-76% 

In September 2021, the first OptiBoost for cuttings machine was installed at Mondi Group in South Africa to start trials on Eucalyptus cuttings. Mondi is a leading global packaging and paper group with a focus on being sustainable by design. They only source wood from either their own sustainably managed forests or purchase it externally from responsible sources. 

Based on the trial we can conclude that in Eucalyptus our method will: 

  • improve cuttings quality in the nursery by reducing losses 
  • promote rooting 
  • speed up the rooting process 
  • increase the number of leaves 
  • improve the roots diameter
  • improve the roots lengths 

Speeding up the rooting process in the first stage in the nursery gives many benefits. In this stage, a heat tunnel is used to maintain humidity, temperature and to protect the cuttings from disease.  

In total, 19.992cuttingsweretreatedduring2weeks. After 56 days, great results could be confirmed: 

The rooting/survival could be improved by 20 – 76 % depending on the variety and recipe. All in all, OptiBoost treated cuttings showed better rooting for all 3 tested varieties. 

What’s next? 

With such great results achieved, exciting times lay ahead. OptiBoost technology showed to improve the survival and rooting of cuttings. But we believe we can achieve even more by developing our method further. The goal is to develop the technology to: 

  • optimizethepropagationprocess
  • reducetheuseofwater– exposure tospores&diseases
  • improve growthperformance andcommercialpotential
  • support earliergrowthethighercontentofcellulose

With such great results achieved, exciting times lay ahead. OptiBoost technology has shown to improve survival and rooting of cuttings. But we believe we can achieve even more by developing our method further

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