An olla is a ceramic jar, often unglazed, used for cooking stews or soups, for the storage of water or dry foods, or for other purposes. Ollas have a short wide neck and a wider belly.

Because water seeps through the walls of an unglazed olla, these vessels can be used to irrigate plants. The olla is buried in the ground next to the roots of the plant to be irrigated, with the neck of the olla extending above the soil. The olla is filled with water, which gradually seeps into the soil to water the roots of the plant. It is an efficient method, since no water is lost to evaporation or run-off.

Note:  Several of the garden plots at the Garland Community Garden will feature ollas.  We will keep records regarding the amount of water used in these plots.