Our story

Gary Hurlstone founded NexGen Tree Shelters in 2020. Gary was following in the footsteps of his father, Graham, who, in the mid-1980s, invented the Tubex Tree Shelter, which fast became the market leader.

Of course, 35 years ago, we were unaware of the environmental harm some plastics can cause. The climate crisis was not high on the agenda, and few people considered the need to use sustainable materials that biodegrade without harming the soil or local wildlife.

Today, things are very different. We are all too aware of the urgent need to move away from using plastic and do everything we can to protect the environment.

With this in mind, Gary took his father’s 35-year-old design and began four years of painstaking research to update it to a version that would perform at least as well, be cost-effective, and, most important of all, be environmentally friendly.

Gary worked with foresters, landowners and industry experts, exploring which materials would meet these criteria. After numerous trials, wool proved to be the ideal material for the substrate around which we’ve built the NexGen Tree Shelter range.

Gary Hurlstone, founder of NexGen Tree Shelters

In March 2021, Gary was featured on BBC Radio 4’s Farming Today programme. During the interview, Gary talked about his research into the materials we use in our tree shelters and how he and his father used to discuss creating a biodegradable alternative to plastic. Listen to the interview (which is three and a half minutes long).

Our focus on R&D

As you can see, research and development are vitally important to us here at NexGen. Without Gary’s initial efforts, we would not have discovered the ideal balance of materials to create a tree shelter that is:

  • Fully biodegradable
  • pH neutral
  • Ecotoxicity neutral
  • Proven to last five years
  • Cost-effective

We will continue to monitor the performance of our tree shelters and research new uses for our material technology. You can find out more about our R&D here.

Why NexGen

The name NexGen reflects that Gary is the next generation of his family to invent a high-performance tree shelter.

However, it also shows our commitment to protecting the environment for the next generation, and generations to come. You can read more about our ethos here.

Our ethos

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Our R&D

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Our team

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NexGen. Protect your young trees. Protect the environment.

Get in touch today to find out more