Our friends at Tree Protection Supply have three great blog posts to check out:
This one compares the performance of tree tubes to wire mesh cages. Wire mesh cages are seen by many as an alternative to tree tubes. While they do protect seedlings from deer browse, they don’t protect from drying winds and drought – and therefore the seedlings are still prone to moisture stress. The difference in health and growth rate between tree tubes and wire mesh cages is night and day.
Interestingly you see a big difference between the sawtooth oak that grew in the light green Tubex Combitube Tree Tube and the other type.
This post does a terrific job of explaining the results demonstrated in the previous post – namely how the advantageous microclimate inside tree tubes fosters better survival and faster growth.
Finally, I really love this one: Two videos that demonstrate an under-appreciated aspect of tree tubes – the way tree tubes make is possible to locate your seedlings amidst the weeds and brush so you can mow/spray around them. So many tree planters plant seedlings in spring and go back to check on them in June only to find the field so overgrown that they can’t even locate the seedlings they planted. If you can’t see the seedlings then you can’t mow or spray for fear you’ll mow them off or kill them with Roundup. And if you can’t see your seedlings that means that they aren’t getting any sunlight, and that weeds are taking the soil moisture and nutrients your seedlings need.