Q & A – Ollas & Seeds

Q. Hello, a few “olla” questions. Can they be used in colder NE climates without having to dig them up in the fall? How close can you plant to them, or more to the point how far can you expect the water to migrate so that you can figure how many of them would be effective??Also, you must buy seed in bulk.. where do you purchase it and do you believe in organic seed?? Thanks…

A. Good question. Not being familiar with colder climates I would think with the snow, ice it would be a good idea to remove them from the soil. As for planting please view the ‘Olla Planting Guide‘ [pdf]

For the 1.5 gallon olla the water spread is approximately 18″

Yes, we do buy seeds in bulk and we do believe in purchasing organic and heirloom seeds. The spring ritual has started, seed catalogs are everywhere – on dining room tables, coffee tables being thumbed through and ogled over.   Every spring we are tempted to try new varieties. Like it’s been for the past 15 years we still buy regular favorites since our limited space prohibits us from saving certain seeds — cucumbers, squashes or large quantities of salad greens.

Even though we had big plans for theonline store sadly it looks like we won’t be able to distribute our favorite varieties of seeds due to the extremely high overhead cost. I know this news is going to make some of our readers very disappointed, but sometimes things just don’t work out as planned. Anyhow…

Instead here’s a list of our a few of our favorite seed companies
Johnny’s Selected Seeds(for growers such as ourselvesoffers bulk seed purchase)Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds (longtime favorite)Seed Savers Exchange (supporting and preserving those who SOS – save our seeds)

Q. Do you cover the tops of the ollas? Here in MN you’d get mosquitoes breeding in them if you didn’t.

A. Good point. Thanks for reminding me. Yes, we cover the ollas. We use rocks to cover over the opening of the ollas to prevent mosquitoes from invading the interior of the olla.

Here you can see photos of the clay pot-rock bed in the backyard garden (note the rocks on top)

New Wagonload of Goods

Thank for to all those who ordered from PTF’s online store in the month of January, we’ve even had some inquires into the compost toilets and greywater system. While many of the items we have in stock, most are dropped ship and others are in route and we thank you for your patience while we receive such items. Since the orders trickle in a few at a time, we try to bunch up our wholesale orders/shipments. For instance, we don’t have all the books that we feature in stock so we wait till we get a few book orders before ordering from the publishing company. So there’s a few weeks lag time especially on books and the new items we feature and we thank you for your patience.

What’s new on the wagon this month

Earth Dinner Deck Cards – Consider that what and how we eat indeed determines the health of the Earth. Your Earth Dinner™ is an opportunity for you to understand–at least for one night—where each ingredient on your table comes from. The challenge for your dinner party guests is to share the story behind each dish. Who grew the food? How was it grown? What is the geographic origin of the food?
Insulated Stainless Steel Mugs – Smart alternatives to plastic mugs, styrofoam and wasteful, use-and-toss paper cups.
The Sustainable Vegetable Garden – Based on the best-selling How To Grow More Vegetables Than You Ever Thought Possible on Less Land Than You Can Imagine , The Sustainable Vegetable Garden is a simpler book for those just beginning to garden
Biosta Sprouter – Easy to use sprouting system for making a variety of nutritious sprouts right in the kitchen. Designed for sprouting small seeds such as: alfalfa, radish, and clover.
Cotton Tote Bag – Made from natural cotton (unbleached and untreated). Generously sized, the EveryDay Tote will hold as much as a full grocery bag. The cotton web handles allow you to comfortably carry the bag either over the shoulder or as a tote, without straining.
Sun Mar Garden Composters – Composting can’t get any easier than with Sun-Mar’s new line of garden composters. Sunmar patented Autoflow® Technology does all of the work for you. Compost materials go in the top and finished compost exits automatically out the end as the drum rotates. No more digging, forking, poking, lifting, or other “work” that previously went with composting! Easy to turn, easy to compost, and even easy to assemble.

Bantams & Standard Chickens – If you always dreamed of raising a flock of chickens, we are taking advance orders on certain selection of baby chicks. Hurry!  This is a limited time offer. All orders must be placed by March 10th. Jordanne also offers consultation services.

coming soon
rain barrels
backyard poultry kit