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I think I've stumbled across a great method for repotting and wondered if this is a known method that I've just discovered?

I'm calling it rootstacking for the moment. By growing plants in shallow medium (e.g. coco) and getting them rootbound, you can then transplant into THE SAME SIZE POT and allow the lower part to then get rootbound, essentially doubling the rootmass....and as everyone knows...more roots = more buds = happy.

Here's a picture of what I mean. I think if you rootstack every repot, you get to double the rootmass (or more) whilst only repotting 3 times but getting the benefit of repotting 6 times (and only using 3 pots).

I hope this makes some kind of sense. I've started doing it on my Chronic and Sonic Boom and we'll see how they go. If anyone else is doing this already, or I'm missing something and this is a waste of time, please let me know!!



Interesting theory FF but isn't the act of becoming rootbound an inhibitor of growth for the plant long term?

Would this dampen yield is what I'm trying to ask?

Let's hear from the Experts and Breeder....


im thinking it will be counter productive they get root bound several times might stress them out more than neccessary? Also your just basically making the root ball denser thus in theory root bounding the hell out of them.

Jalisco Kid

Bog used to double pot for more root space. I am sure you can find one of his old threads. JK


We do a variation of this method in an ebb/flo system. We start each plant in a 5" square pot of Hydroton. As they grow, the root system quickly outgrows the pots, and sends roots out thru the bottom drain holes. When a good size ball collects in the bottom of the tray, we simply slip another 5" pot over the one with the plant. The pots have about an inch of space between the bottoms, the the roots fill that space real quick, and then begin growing out the drain holes again within about a week. Let me tell you....a LOT of roots will pack into that 1" space. Normally we end up doing that twice during the ten days of veg, and harvest. The original pot with the hydroton will have a hard rootball, but we never saw any signs that it was slowing down or hurting anything. In fact, its been one of our best moves to increase health and yield. More roots=more plant=more roots=more plant....kind of like a perpetual motion machine.

We do the same for mamas, just keep adding pots and currently have a couple mamas that are in 7 pots each.


I repot alot always into bigger pots though. being i only really have access to soil amendments it allows me to keep nutes up.


Pics are worth.....

We are in the process of replacing a mama, and thought some pics of our 'root restacking' method might help.

Gonna begin at the end. #1 pic is the original block of Hydroton the clone was planted in about 4 months ago. You can see the fresh cut off stem. This block of hydroton is rock hard. It could kill a man if swung hard at his head.

Then the rest of the pics are showing the dismantling of the pots, and the root mat that each pot has. These root mats are very thick and dense, and if we took the time to unravel them, each one would stretch out about 18". You can see the roots also grow up the side of the pots too. All total, my guess is that there is around 10ft of healthy, thick roots for this mama.

For a regular crop, we generally add an extra two or three pots from planting clones to harvest. Still...that extra 3ft of roots does some amazing things to the health and yield.


This is a brilliant idea, I'll be using this in my veg cupboard very soon - Thanks :)


V. cool Likeakite.....so is it just the extra space in the very bottom of the pot that gets stacked?

Here's two of my rootstacked plants that I repotted tonight - you can see where the two layers of roots are:


Here's two of my rootstacked plants that I repotted tonight - you can see where the two layers of roots are:[/QUOTE]

:character0103:Ahhh...nice healthy white roots. I bet youre gonna see an improvement. We never tried it in anything but Hydroton and Rockwool, but i dont think it will make a lot of difference in what medium is used.

Yep, its just the space in between the pot bottoms that fill with roots. Am about to start an experiment using different size pots so that there will be just one larger space for the roots to fill, instead of several smaller spaces, and will start another thread if it happens. Good luck with it FF, of course, you will keep us updated? Onward and upward.:banana:


Like - What I've been considering are removable bottom pots....either with a slide or a hinged door. You still can put drainage holes in the bottoms and when roots fill them up, you just remove the bottom of the pot and put it on top of another (bigger) one.

Surely there's a market for these?



Sounds very interesting... I think it sounds like something definitely worth trying. I don't think you want to let them grow too long in a shallow pot but just long enough to maximize root development in the limited space... and you could progressively repot it in the same pot maybe even a couple times to bulk the root structure and density...

Were you baked when you thought of this? NICE!

I'm experimenting with some grow bags called Tex-R Agroliner growbags. They have a copper sulphite coating that prevents roots from 'spinning' around the base and getting root bound. The roots hit the coating and they self prune... kinda like the airpots do but in a different way. I called and asked if the coating could be absorbed into the roots and if they can be used safely for edibles and he said it would be a good thing if the copper sulphite was able to leach out as it fights fungus and is good for plants but that can't happen and they're totally safe. So far I'm just trying an order of 1 gal bags to start my clones in... I'll post results when the time comes for replanting... Here's a link if you'd like to check them out...


They are reversible and can be used with the coating (black side) on the inside or outside of the bag... Pictured below is a hosta growing in a bag. Growers are growing their hostas in large bags placed in the ground with the coated side out and it keeps invasive roots out of the hosta's roots. When I talked to the guy at the manufacturer he said they should work either way cuz when roots hit that coating the just stop... We'll see!


they call me j

my personal opinion is....no matter what pot you use...you can only get so many roots in there.....just cause your doing the 'stack' whatever..your just taking that much longer to get the plant root bound in that pot....ALSO more transplants = more stress. but, never have tried it myself..just a thought


Hummmm.....removable bottoms might be something to think about during the long hours we all stare at the girls. I wonder if maybe just cutting the bottoms off a few pots/bags might work as an experiment to see if it will do the job. Good thinkin'.

We have some 5" pots from 3 different manufacturers, and they dont fit together exactly perfectly. One combination of pots leaves about 4" of space between pot bottoms, so were gonna try that combination out next time around.

Excellent thread folks. Some great thoughts floating around here.


Im planning to remake a couple of mothers as i've allowed them to get out of shape and too large. Also they are very woody after a year or so. I should of pruned more regularly near the bottoms.

I came up with this stacking idea a few weeks ago after seeing that so many of my roots seem to be very dense near the outside of a soil block. Its nice to see im not crazy.

Root autopsies on harvested plants shows roots through-out the soil but the edges have a much denser amount of I hope this is not an illusion of small threaded roots inside the soil and just big thick tapper roots (which would have less surface area for absorption than many small ones) at the side.

I plan to take two clones of identical size etcs and grow them side by side under cfls and see which mother i like the best.
I expect the stacker plant will take longer to get to the same height as non stacker for at least the first 2-4 stacks. Due to time being root bound. However its eventual rootmass should be bigger and allow for a bigger plant to develop, and also recover after large prunings :)
This last point is why i like the idea for mothers.

I dont think this would be any better for bud intended plants unless you have infinite amounts of veg time to play with. I suspect it would be quicker to grow the cycle flat out as norm, and save the extra veg time... unless your confined to pot size for some reason and need bigger plants.


Premium Member
good science

IMO if your roots are growing so is the plant ....its a timing thing dont let them get root bound but close and dubble pot three times (or only one time on the last one and leave the room to grow in flower) very good science man i am all over that in my next grow.......thanxs
Tobor the 8th Man

Tobor the 8th Man

Plants do waste a lot of soil space when they grow. They want to shoot straight down. I mentioned in a waterfarm thread once how the roots shoot right down into the bottom and waste so much hydroton space.

I was using PowerGrowers and when I layered my hydroton I put in 4 inches and then lined the pot with mesh cloth. Then I put 4 more inches of hyrdoton and lined with cloth. I got like 5 layers. So the plant went in the top layer. I waited until the roots were all filled in that space and slid out the mesh cloth (the table cloth trick). Then they filled the next layer and I slid out the cloth. The roots never hit water until just a few weeks to go.

The next time I lined the very bottom of the hydroton with mesh cloth that I never removed and this kept the roots from getting to the water the whole grow. I never had any ph problems and water temp doesn't matter because roots are not in there. Roots are not meant to be in the water in a water farm anyways. It is a drip method not a soak method.

I was thinking they should make pots with sliders that you pull out the side to let the roots grow down slowly and fill all the soil fully (not get potbound).

Currently when I transplant I do what you do but differently. I start in a small pot. When it gets filled I pot out the root mass and separate it gently and loosen it. Then I butterfly it up the middle and fluff all the roots out into a flat circular mass and put that near the top of the next pot and cover.

When plants are vegging manipulating the roots doesn't stress them enough to matter. I never notice any slow down at all.
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