Mariplast North America is redefining the concept of grow-tubes or plant protectors with the introduction of SHELLT™ Grow-Tubes to the American market. These innovative protectors offer several advantages, including fast installation, high-quality, efficient design, and sustainability to protect new plants and ensure a faster growth.
After having initially been developed in collaboration with vineyard managers in the Chianti area of Tuscany, they have been marketed with success all over Europe under the OSO label (www.ososhe.com). The company received high reviews from its customers, who saw improved growth and survival rates compared to traditional plastic or paper protectors. In 2016, the products have been improved even further for the American market, and they are now being manufactured in South Carolina by Mariplast North America, a well-established plastic manufacturing company.
SHELLT grow-tubes display four major improvements compared to traditional paper or plastic product. The first one is a very quick installation and removal (five seconds, with no ties or tools needed to install and remove) with great savings in labour time. The tubes easily click together with two hinges. Once easily taken off, the grow-tubes are able to lay flat for facilitated storage in between uses. The website www.shellt.us shows a video of how quick and easy it is to install and remove them. The second advantage is better ventilation, thanks to a clever design that protects from spraying but allows more air to reach the plant. The third one is the flexibility of having the option of easily stacking the tubes vertically or laterally to make them taller or wider. The fourth advantage is their sturdiness, as these grow-tubes are plastic injection moulded and robust. They are made of 100 per cent polypropylene, with a UV inhibitor to give each tube the ability to last in the sun for at least five years. The products can be re-used for several plantings, and are 100 per cent recyclable at the end of their life cycle.
The most popular colours are light green or light brown, but SHELLT™ offers several different colours to choose from to match the specific environment or highlight specific plants or areas of the field. SHELLT™ grow tubes are patent pending, and already being used with success on grapevines and orchard trees, such as almond, walnut, avocado, pistachio, kiwi, and goji berry.