Clay Pot Irrigation: A Workshop on Water Conservation

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Here are some examples of authentic ollas produced in Albuquerque.

Here are some examples of authentic ollas produced in Albuquerque.

Water conservation is always an issue in dry, sunny Denver.    As a leader in the community garden, I have worked with the committee for years to encourage gardeners to incorporate water conservation methods in their gardens — mulch, soaker hoses, drip irrigation, watering earlier and later in the day, hand watering, etc.     I am always looking for new ways to reduce water usage so when a fellow gardener introduced the idea of using clay pots to irrigate, my interest was peaked.    Here are some photos from the Clay Pot Irrigation Workshop given by Rosedale Gardener, Syd Uphoff, at our garden several weeks ago.   I am definitely planning to test drive some ollas in my garden this year.

Syd is talking about how to use the olla's to save water in your garden.

Syd is talking about how to use the olla’s to save water in your garden.

The cost of making your own ollas is significantly less than purchasing the authentic pots.    The cost to make your own is under $7 each.

The cost of making your own ollas is significantly less than purchasing the authentic pots. The cost to make your own is under $7 each.

Here are some examples of authentic ollas produced in Albaqueque.

Here are some examples of authentic ollas produced in Albaqueque.

The order form for ollas in New Mexico.

The order form for ollas in New Mexico.

Syd demonstrates how to seal the two terracotta pots with silicon caulk.

Syd demonstrates how to seal the two terracotta pots with silicon caulk.

A larger ollas made to hold a gallon and a half of water.

A larger ollas made to hold a gallon and a half of water.

Here are the olla's buried up to the white paint which seals the top from water evaporation.

Here are the olla’s buried up to the white paint which seals the top from water evaporation.

The smaller olla hold a gallon of water.

The smaller olla hold a gallon of water.

Ollas need to be filled 2-3 times a week.    You plant within 12-15 inches of the olla and the roots will grow close.   Seeds should be hand watered until they have roots.

Ollas need to be filled 2-3 times a week. You plant within 12-15 inches of the olla and the roots will grow close. Seeds should be hand watered until they have roots.

The rocks on top keep water from evaporating.

The rocks on top keep water from evaporating.

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One response »

  1. Pingback: Ollas: Ancient Low Tech and Low Cost Sub-Surface Irrigation System | Survival Sherpa

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