Making An Olla With Everyday Things
When water supplies are low using an Olla to water plants, preserves water and can save your plants, and possibly your life. Maybe like me you had never heard of an Olla, pronounced Oh Yah. Learn How I Make An Olla From Everyday Things.
What is an Olla?
An Olla is an ancient watering pot, that is buried in the ground in the area that you put your plants when the plants need water the roots suck the water from the Olla.
This is possible because Ollas are made from porous unglazed clay that allows water to seep out when the plants need it.
It is said that when you water plants with an Olla the plants are able to utilize almost 100% of the water. As opposed to surface irrigation that evaporates before the plants can benefit from the water.
Ollas are often used for water conservation, and to keep plants from dying for lack of water in arid desert climates.
When I learned about Ollas I wanted to implement them in my desert garden, and I started searching for Olla’s that I could afford. I think I found about 3 sources for Ollas but the prices were prohibitive for my small budget.
If I could afford it I would purchase this olla from Dripping Springs Ollas
After quite a few searches I happened on to an Olla tutorial “How to make your own Ollas”, and I thought If I am going to have Ollas then I was going to have to make them myself.
Since I don’t know how to throw pottery or have access to a kiln, following that tutorial would be the way I could make my own Ollas.
Below Is What I did…
How I made an Olla
I am not going to write you an official tutorial, only document what I have done.
I used 6-inch pots, and very small pot plates designed to fit under very small pots. The 6-inch pots hold 2.5 quarts of water.
I glued the little plate on one of the holes any piece of clay or tile would also work so that it covers the hole.
I used regular Gorilla Glue and the package said to weigh the objects down, so I used what I had, and it worked.
You can see that I worked into the night, but here I am gluing the two pots together.
The finished Olla pot. Before putting the pot in the ground I tested to see if it leaked, then filled any leaky areas with more glue and let it dry, then tested again.
Putting them in the ground: My husband suggested I use the post hole digger, and it worked just fine.
This is what they look like in my ground, I transplanted Strawberry plants on the mound, but they died before I got the Olla’s going. I will update after I get something growing here.
The Olla’s cost me less than $3.00 each to make, not counting the Gorilla Glue, which I have tons left, enough left to make many more Olla’s. If I had old clay pots I could have saved even more.
What about you!
So how about it, will you give making your own Olla a try? You can use any size pot you like, and old pots work just as well as a new pot..
Just need a few old pots and some waterproof glue… I like the Gorilla glue, it is water activated…
Thank you for stopping by and please leave a comment below…
Looking for Heirloom Seeds?
If you would like some Heirloom open-pollinated seeds to plant with your Olla’s, check out our Seeds of the Month Club Post… Click Here…
Where I learned about Ollas…
I learned about Ollas from the Urban Homestead from watching this video, and visiting their website:
I loved making the Ollas and the idea behind them, but I guess that I am just to lazy, because I quickly got tired of filling them by hand. If I had an automated watering system in place I would have liked them more… They currently sit on the side of my house waiting for another try.