Last year, Voort Tomatoes switched to RootmaXX blocks from Cultilene. The fact that the blocks are drier, allow steadier root development and significantly reduce crazy roots when compared with standard blocks were the telling factors for the company.

Robin de Zeeuw, assistant growing manager, explains: "The diversity of the job is what appeals to me most. Every day brings something different. For example, the beginning and end of a growing cycle requires different insights from a grower. Taking part in study groups, attending open days and internal discussions all help me to learn a lot more about the technical aspects of crop production."

Steady root development
When the subject of substrate is raised, De Zeeuw says emphatically: "Substrate is an essential part of the growing process and is therefore very important. Some growers say they can grow in any substrate, which I don't understand because there are a lot of differences, especially in terms of moisture levels and root development."

The reason why Voort Tomatoes has chosen Cultilene is because of the positive results from a successful trial. Says De Zeeuw: "Last year our propagator offered us the opportunity for a trial with RootmaXX blocks. During growing we found that the blocks were drier and gave much steadier root development than standard blocks. Although crazy roots are not completely eradicated with RootmaXX, we have far fewer problems with them than in standard blocks," explains De Zeeuw. "We had a good feeling about this, which is the main reason why we decided to switch to RootmaXX."

Drier and more homogeneous
According to De Zeeuw, it is particularly important for a substrate block to be homogeneous. "This is the only way to produce a uniform crop every time. It is also important for the block to provide good EC control. We have seen this very clearly over the past year in growing without lights. Good root development in the block is also essential."

According to De Zeeuw, RootmaXX meets these requirements perfectly. "The block is drier but still very homogeneous, and the crossed fibre structure of the block allows easier EC control throughout the block. Even as a drier block, you also see root development right to the top of the block."

De Zeeuw is very confident about working with RootmaXX and Exact Air slabs in the coming year. "We are looking forward to a smooth and stable production year."

For more information:
Saint-Gobain Cultilene
Zeusstraat 2
5048 CA Tilburg
t + 31 (0)13 578 00 57