BREIF HISTORY OF PLANTING BAGS.
Although planting bags were first manufactured for home use in the 1970s, they quickly evolved into use in more commercial applications. Farmers with small parcels of land and those in dry areas now have alternative ways to commercially grow crops. The bags require little space and minimum labor to use. Output per unit area is generally high and farmers receive a good return on investments.
STRUCTURE AND COMPOSITION.
They are weaved from thick breathable fabric, similar to a reusable grocery bag. Planting bags are well aerated and have superior drainage over traditional plastic pots. The bags are usually filled with a growing medium, which can range from soil to planting media or a mixture of these items.
They come in various height and width which makes them versatile to accommodate any size plant. This depends on the type of crop planted and purpose for planting. For example, seedlings for transplanting and crops like pepper will require small bags while leafy vegetables such as spinach will require big bags. The bags vary between 4 to 40 cubic liters. They are very adaptable and can easily be arranged or re-arranged as needed.
HOW ARE THEY USED?
Planting bags are ideal for plants with small root structures. Typically, planting bags are used to grow various vegetables and even plants such as small to medium-sized trees. Nutrients are added to last the growing season which means only watering is required. Grow bags are the perfect solution on limited space or poor soil conditions.
Planting bags can be manipulated to suit various farm layouts and topography because they can be easily moved from one place to another to suit changing light conditions. The bags do not have a definite shape and can be re-shaped as needed. Bags take up less space when not in use and be stored by simply folding them up and putting them away until needed.
Watering can be a challenge in any farm. This occurs because of the superior aeration and drainage inherent to the fabric bags. Too much water may make the plants start developing mold and fungus, while too little water and they dry out. By installing a drip watering system, the planting bags will get a constant moisture supply. A pipe drip system works fairly well for this application.
Why use planting bags?
- Drainage and root aeration- Planting bags are weaved from breathable fabric which provides superior drainage and good root aeration which makes them most preferred.
- Healthy plant roots- Root bounding does not occur with grow bags. Instead, when the roots reach the wall, they outgrow the bag and get burnt off. This causes the plant to produce new healthy roots that branch off the original ones.
- Temperature control- During hot weather, the weaved fabric bags regulate temperature due to their breathable quality. Excess heat can escape from the sides of the bag.
- Storage- When not in use, planting bags are emptied of their contents, folded and then stored. This occupies very minimal space and enables them to be reused.
- Versatility- Planting bags are lightweight and usually come with built-in handles making them easy to move from one location to another.
Benefits of planting bags.
- They are weaved from breathable material which allows good circulation of air.
- By using planting bags, plants develop a good root structure at an early age which increases the chance of the plant keeping its natural root structure when it comes time to transplanting.
- Planting bags are much better at controlling temperature and moisture content of the planting media. In the cold seasons, the fabric will keep the plant warmer, and in hot seasons, the fabric will cool the plant.
- The durability and reusable nature of planting bags makes them environmentally friendly.