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Save Water With Ollas



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What is an Olla and why do you need them?

The definition of an olla is a low fired, clay ceramic vessel used to save a gardener time, energy and water.  Potted planters watered this way do not put stress on water sources and help potted plants to live long healthy lives.  A clay olla watering jar is considered an inexpensive way to maximize the output of your garden while minimizing overwatering, runoff and water loss.

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When watering your garden containers, it is sometimes difficult to get enough water to the roots of the plants only without the water flowing out the bottom drain hole and on to the porch or patio surface.  With the olla planted in the center of the flowerpot, the water will seep out the sides of the porous clay directly into the area where the roots are located.  Many times, the roots will be drawn to this source of water and wrap themselves around the olla bottle.  Water irrigation for garden planters becomes super-efficient and has little runoff or evaporation.

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Bury a watering clay olla in the center of your garden container, leaving 2Ē above the opening of the bottom so dirt and mulch donít fall inside.  Gently tap soil around the olla making sure there are no air pockets.  Fill with water.  Plan on checking the water levels of the ollas on a regular schedule until you have worked with them for a bit to understand how much and how often you should refill them.

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Small size watering ollas are good for porch and patio pots.  Usually, space would be about 2 feet long like a window box planter or wide like a round garden pot or garden bowl.  The medium size is best when you have large planters where you need to water around 3 feet.  The large size is better for potted trees, large shrubs or the largest planters you have.  You can always use multiple ollas in each pot or window box.

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FYI:  When leaving for a short vacation, Ollas are the perfect solution for your flowers to stay healthy and watered while you are gone.  With the slow release of water, they should be good for up to 10 days or so.

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So, a quick recap:
Ollas save water
Good for when on Vacation
Saves money and is inexpensive to purchase & place.
Self-regulating watering system
Promotes root development
Improves soil structure


  601-Olla-Watering-Pots
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ollas, watering vessels, watering pots, watering bottles, oyas, olas, arizonapottery, arizona pottery,




By
Post Last Updated: 1/7/2020 12:37:00 PM 

Watering Succulents & Cactus



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Today Succulents and Cactus are very popular.  You see larger selections of them to choose from at your local garden center or nursery.  They look so fantastic with their weird leaves and spikes yet are the perfect plant to put into garden containers or indoors decorative pottery.  If you have tried to pot these plants and had issues with over or under watering we would like to offer a few tips.

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Did you know that the word succulent means a plant that can hold excess water?  Their leaves look really puffy and fleshy almost like they will squirt liquid.  Now there are other succulents like cactus that may not look that way but donít require a lot of water to survive.

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When it comes to how much and when is best to water a succulent container, the rule that works best is to allow the soil to become dry between watering but not hard and compact.  Usually what happens is you see some top soil that has dried out, usually from the wind conditions, and think the plant needs more.  That is incorrect.  Over watering is the one main reason for potted succulent problems.

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The correct way to water is to wait till the water drains out the drain hole of the planter base.  Water again and let drain completely.  This allows the potted succulents roots time to drink in water.  You donít want your garden container sitting in water or the plant will continue to suck up the liquid.

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If you question whether you need more water or not it is best to go with under watering than over watering.  Remember that succulent garden planters grow slowly in winter so they need much less water than summer months.  If your pots are indoors you may need to water every 4 days if your homes indoor air is arid.

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The best way to water is to use a small watering can and place the spout on the soil.  Itís best not to water the leaves only.  By watering the soils surface you give the roots of the potted succulent a longer time to absorb the liquid.  It wonít hurt the leaves if they get wet but aim for the soil surface first.



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succulents, potted cactus, potted succulents, pottery, planters pots,



By
Post Last Updated: 11/19/2018 11:43:05 AM 

Just Add Water



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No space for a pond?  No problem.  Did you know you can create a water world in a garden container?  Who doesn't like to look at or listen to water when on the patio, porch or in the garden.

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Of course when trying to select a container you need to consider all your choices.  Plastic buckets, colorful waterproof laundry baskets or garden pottery and containers where the drain hole has been plugged.  Just make sure the container needs to be able to hold water.  If for example you like the look of terracotta and really want to turn a terra-cotta container into a pond you can always line it with  black flexi pond liners.  They are easily cut to fit and will give you the illusion of depth when viewed thru the water.

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Next choose the plant materials.  There are really a lot to choose from.  Aquatic plants that you buy can simple be placed inside your water garden container.  There is no need to repot them in another medium.  Just add a few floating plants for a finished look.  When it comes to chooses you can go with submerged plants which grow partly in and partly out of the water in full sun or shade.  Or floating plants like lilies like elephant ears.  Lastly shoreline plants like paprus which grow to 18 inches and add height.

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Whether or not you choose to have a pump that will circulate the water or create a fountain is up to you.  You will have to contact them for further information but they are great options to consider.

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Control algae in your container by limiting its sunlight and nutrients.  Place the pot out of direct sun and include underwater and floating plants that elbow algae out and shade the waters surface.  Above all else.  Use what you like and think is attractive, find that perfect spot for the container and give it a go.  You never know, this maybe the best garden feature you will own.

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water gardens, container gardens, container ponds, water in pots.



By
Post Last Updated: 6/19/2018 2:49:45 PM 

When To Water Your Garden Planters?



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You selected the perfect garden planter, you researched and purchased the best kinds of plants and now you ask, When is the best time to water?  Good question.  You want to make sure when it comes to watering your potted plants you get it right.  Of course we all know that too much or too little can kill most plants and make those garden planters look pretty bad.

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First you must make sure that your garden pottery has drain holes. Even succulents & cacti don't like to sit in standing water.  Then early morning is the best time to water your planters.  This is because the sun is barely up and the temps are still pretty cool.  Now is the time that water can penetrate the soil and get down to the roots before being evaporated by the sun & heat.

Watering your planter early also means that the plants will have time to soak up and store some of the water before they are dried out and waiting in the afternoon.  Don't believe that spraying the leaves of the potted plants and then having the full sun hit them will scorch them or cause burning. That is simply not true.

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The second best time to water your potted garden planters is late afternoon or early evening.  What you are trying to do is to avoid watering your containers in the middle of the day.  If you wait till early evening try not to get water all over the plants leaves.  Letting the water sit on the leaves can cause pathogens and disease.  So if you have a choice always go with morning or late morning.

Do NOT water at night.  You think it's a good time to water your planters so that they can soak up all that moisture but it really causes disease like stated above because there is not evaporation.

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So to rap this up, here are a few last tips.

Don't overwater - look for limp or soggy leaves, rotting at the stem or tips browning.
Water consistently over the surface of the soil and not your leaves. When you water, water deeply.  The deeper the better for encouraging the potted plants roots to spread throughout the planter.

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watering planters, water garden pottery, watering containers



By
Post Last Updated: 9/27/2017 12:44:56 PM 

How thirsty are your potted plants?



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Potted plants growing in garden containers are at your mercy when it comes to getting the right amount of water.  Unlike plants growing in the ground that can rely on deep roots to get them through dry spells, container grown plants have limited soil from which to drink.  On the other hand, if container grown plants are left to sit too long in saucers full of water, the roots can die from lack of oxygen.

It comes down to this.  If you want to be successful growing plants in garden containers, that is, if you want flowers to bloom well and your fruits, herbs & veggies to produce a bountiful harvest, you have to be an attentive & efficient waterer!

When asked " How often should I water my plants" there is no easy answer.  It always involves several factors.

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1.  Consider Location:  Planted pots under eaves or a dense tree may be deprived of rain. Stand next to your containers and look up, can you see the sky?  Obviously pots on a covered porch must receive all their water from you because they are out of the rain. All containers placed in full sun need frequent watering plus consider if the surface they are on is concrete.  If so they will dry out faster than a wood deck which tends to stay cooler.  Pots near a light colored, south facing wall, which reflects light & heat will dry out faster than those farther away.

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2.  Climate & Weather:  Climate is determined by where you live.  If you live in Seattle where it is humid and has a lot of rain, watering isn't a constant chore. In drier, hotter areas like Phoenix, watering would be a daily even twice daily chore.  Weather is what is happening RIGHT NOW!  Pay attention. Hot winds on cloudless days can dry out a hanging pot in a matter of minutes.

3.  Pot Type & Color: The porosity of containers influence how much water evaporates through it's sides.  Terracotta is meant to breathe and is more porous than a poly resin or concrete planter.  Lighter colors also reflect sunlight and dry out more slowly than darker colored ones, which absorb heat.

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4.  Soil Variations:  Potting soils used in containers are formulated for good drainage, which means they dry out quickly. So read the bags when visiting your local nursery or check back on this blog for recommendations in future posts.

5.  Root-boundedness:  Plants grown in containers have roots that become more crowded as it grows.  This requires more water. At this stage it is easy to over water plants. As plant roots continue to grow the organic matter in the pot mix breaks down, the containers more roots than soil.  The plant is root bound and the root ball can be difficult to keep moist.  The is the time to transfer to a larger planter.

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Whether you have experienced any of the conditions listed above or something we may have missed, don't hesitate to comment here.

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watering potted plants, how much water for garden containers, water potted plants



By
Post Last Updated: 3/1/2017 3:41:30 PM 

Make Your Own Olla Water Pots



Olla Irrigacion
With water becoming such a crisis around the world, we saw this great tip for making your own Olla water pots for irrigation in your garden or landscape.  Many are using irrigation systems but here you can create your own whether you need a lot or a few areas. We love the idea of planting these in the center of a garden pot for a manual watering system.
 
Take 2 terracotta clay flower pots.  Use the size that best fits your needs. These can be as small at 3" or as large as 18".  Cover the hole with silicone, or any material that will plug the hole.  Apply waterproof glue around the rim of the pot.

Turn another pot the same size upside down, do NOT plug that drain hole but set on the top of the base pot where it is glued.  Apply a large rubber band, piece of string or whatever to hold them together.  Let them dry completely.  Now you should have 2 pots top to top. With the bottom
terracotta planter's hole plugged.  

Place in the center of a garden pot and place your plant materials around it.  Cover with soil so that only the hole in the top is showing.  This is make the roots circle the pot where the water will leach out slowly. Fill the pot with water.  Check every couple of days to see how much water is being used.  You can temporarily plus the top hole with a rock or cork piece. Turning a clay saucer over and use as a top can work also. This will slow the evaporation down.

This will keep the water cool and stable, letting it seep thru the pots into the soil and onto the roots.

Now of course if you want to buy our watering pots, they come in many sizes and shapes to meet all your watering needs.  Click here.
Olla Sistema De Irrigacion-1

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By
Post Last Updated: 12/14/2016 1:12:45 PM 

Grow Watermelon in a Pot



 
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Growing watermelon in garden
containers allows this big, sweet and juicy fruit to grow in the smallest of spaces. Sweet and watery melons are without a doubt an iconic summer fruit that everyone loves. When potted, they are perfect for apartment dwellers where all you have is a small balcony to plant on.  Place the potted plants on a patio or next to a back door where you will have easy access. Here are a few tips.

It's best to start from seeds since the plant doesn't like to be transplanted.  Since the roots are long choose a pot that is deep.  This is not the time for a garden bowl or wok shaped pot.  Try to make it at least 2 feet deep and as wide as possible.  Place the pot in a sunny spot.  Where space is tight use a trellis.

Make the potting soil sandy and loamy.  Avoid compact or clay soil. Potted watermelons require a lot of water of keep moist but not wet and make sure the pot  has a drain hole for run off.  Once the fruit starts to swell and mature reduce the watering.

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Fertilize with liquid fertilizers, prune side branches and any damaged leaves.  You should have watermelons in about 90 days.  Tap the side of the melon to hear a hollow sound to know when fully ripe.
 
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By
Post Last Updated: 12/14/2016 2:30:21 PM 

Beautiful Planters Into Water Features



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Turning garden pottery into water features for your home or garden areas are becoming very popular. The sound of moving water is both soothing and calming.  Here are a few ideas to get you started.
 
This water feature shown above, made from an garden pot adds a traditional touch to this contemporary outdoor space. Water spills over the edges of the pot onto a bed of beach pebbles, producing soothing white noise for relaxation.  Design by Chad Robert.

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This Asian inspired garden two pots were used.  The bottom one is sitting upside down with a garden bowl sitting on top.  This is an easy way to hide the pump being used to move the water.  Filling the top bowl with stone adds beauty and weight to keep the pot secure in windy weather.  The koi is a nice addition.

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Here is a bold idea.  Don't hesitate to use bright bold colors for garden
pots when designing a water feature.  This is a large glazed planter that is high fired and will hold up well to the spilling water cascading down the sides.  When everywhere you look is green, add a splash to color!

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By
Post Last Updated: 12/15/2016 10:17:12 AM 

Tips That Help For Potted Planters



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Here are a few great tips we saw at familyhandyman.com for low maintenance landscape ideas that will work great for garden planters.

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1.  Instead of throwing away empty laundry detergent containers, rinse them out thoroughly and then recycle them for watering your potted
planters.  Drill 1/8" holes in the top of the cap, and a 1/2" hole just above the handle to relieve pressure so the water flows freely.  Easy to make and handy to use, this is a great tip for many reasons.  We love the idea of recycling the container and the potted plants will love the added attention and water!

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2.  Use ice to prevent fast draining.  Tired of water draining too quickly through your hanging
planters? Try this ice cube trick.  They will melt slowly enough so plants can absorb as much water as they need.  Perfect tip for hot summers like here in Arizona. Hanging pots are such a lovely addition to any patio or porch that you need to take the time to treat them right. This ice cube trick is the perfect way!
  
Well these are just a few tips for your potted containers, and each is really great. Give them a try and share with us how they work!

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By
Post Last Updated: 12/15/2016 10:19:45 AM 

Water Garden Do It Yourself!




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Every garden is an oasis, and even a modest water feature can add a sense of coolness and calm.  Fortunately, there's no elaborate hardscaping required to try out a water garden in your yard.  You can easily make a pool into a pot out of a glazed high fired planter!
Select a large glazed high fired container at least 30" in diameter without a drain hole preferably.

However, many pots are only available with drains so plug them with silicone.  This large of a pot is heavy and once it's filled with water you will not be able to move it so place it in its permanent location first.  For plant materials, choose a single dwarf water lily, or plants such as canna, Lobelia, and soft rush.

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Arrange the plants in the container, placing the largest in the center or at the back.  To raise plants in smaller pots, set their pots atop overturned empty pots as pictured.  Check that the main container is level, then fill it with water.  Most aquatic plants do best with 1" or more water over their crowns.
 
 18974-Water-Garden-PlanterFor mosquito control, add mosquito fish or goldfish.  a 30" container can accommodate size fish.  Acclimate the fish by placing them, still in the plastic bags, in the tub garden for about 20 minutes.  Or add a mosquito control ring, available at most nurseries.  Now how hard was that!
 
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By
Post Last Updated: 12/21/2016 1:57:48 PM 



Latest Posts
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