I attached a sample project that illustrates how you can use RIA services to get your self-referencing data from a database and populate the RadTreeView. In the example the TreeViewItems are loaded on demand.
I hope it will help you.
the Telerik team
Do you want to have your say when we set our development plans?
Do you want to know when a feature you care about is added or when a bug fixed?
Telerik Public Issue Tracking
system and vote to affect the priority of the items