Tuesday, March 03, 2015 10:54:36 AM
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Help save our national forests, one tree at a time.

Plow & Hearth® has made caring for the environment a priority since we first opened in 1980. Together with our customers, we have already planted more than three million trees nationwide through our Campaign to Reforest America®. As part of our Campaign, Plow & Hearth’s Planting Two For One Program donates two seedlings for every one tree used in our catalog production. So far, we've helped plant more than 25 million trees in our home state of Virginia, and more are being planted every day.

This year, each time a customer buys one of our exclusive Pewter Ornaments or Solar Star Lanterns, we will donate a tree to the National Forest Foundation*.

Trees provide habitat for wildlife, prevent soil erosion and, most importantly, absorb carbon dioxide, which helps reduce global warming. For every ornament or solar ball you purchase, the Ocala National Forest in Florida will receive a seedling to help restore natural habitats lost to forest fires and the effects of an encroaching civilization.

Planting Two For One Program

Plow & Hearth’s PLANTING TWO FOR ONE program, in which we plant two trees for every one used in the production of our catalogs, has become a standard for the catalog industry. Since its inception in 1991, in cooperation with the Virginia Department of Forestry, we've donated over 25 million trees that have been planted in our home state of Virginia. We believe in giving back to the community in which we live as well as making a difference in caring for our environment.

About the Ocala National Forest

While longleaf pine forests once covered most of the southeastern U.S., they now occupy approximately 3% of their historical range. The remnants of this once vast ecosystem currently support almost 60 percent of the reptiles and amphibians in the southeastern United States, nearly 900 endemic plant species, and 29 federally listed threatened or endangered species, including the red-cockaded woodpecker.

The longleaf pine forests of the Ocala National Forest have been negatively impacted by historic forest management practices, lack of natural fire, and invasion by other plant species. As a result of this legacy and the subsequent restoration needed, the National Forest Foundation has been working with the Ocala National Forest to restore this imperiled ecosystem. Restoration of this ecosystem will ensure that these rare forests can continue to offer high-quality habitat to sensitive and endangered species like the Florida black bear and the red-cockaded woodpecker. This project will plant 20,000 longleaf pine seedlings and accomplish comprehensive restoration of this rare forest type. In addition to improving habitat, restoring longleaf pine forests will enhance recreation opportunities for local communities, improve watershed health, and sequester carbon dioxide.

About The National Forests Foundation

Founded by Congressional charter in 1991, the National Forest Foundation (NFF) engages Americans in community-based and national programs that promote the health and public enjoyment of the 193-million-acre National Forest System. Our National Forests provide us with numerous benefits, including:


•133,000 miles of hiking trails
•Fresh water for more than 3,400 communities
•Habitat for hundreds of wildlife species, from bears to elk, cranes and trout
•95 wild and scenic rivers
•Millions of acres of trees to help absorb and offset carbon emissions

With more than 450 local partner organizations and 75,000 volunteers, the NFF works to protect and enhance these many benefits forests provide. Together with our partners, they have completed more than 1,300 projects and have:

•Engaged more than 15,000 youth in outdoor stewardship projects
•Treated 110,000 acres to remove noxious weeds, improving critical wildlife habitat
•Reduced fire hazard on more than 79,000 acres
•95 wild and scenic rivers
•Reduced fire hazard on more than 79,000 acres

The health of America's National Forests depends on people who care about the future of this unique system of public lands. The Friends of the Forest® program helps create an informed, caring constituency for our National Forests, and reaches out to build awareness of the issues and values surrounding our National Forests. For more information about resources, recreational and volunteer opportunities, and to subscribe to the electronic newsletter tree-mail™, visit www.nationalforests.org.

*For a total value of up to $20,000).

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The Olla: A Brief History

Olla (Spanish, pronounced “oh-ya”) jars have been around since ancient times. Made of unglazed ceramic, ollas traditionally have short, narrow necks with wider bodies, and are made in a variety of shapes. They have been used for thousands of years for cooking, storage, and plant irrigation.


When used to irrigate plants, an olla is buried neck-deep in the ground near a plant’s roots, with the opening of the olla extended above the soil so that it can be filled with water periodically. The porous walls of the unglazed pottery allow the water to seep through gradually, constantly and consistently hydrating the plants without overwatering them – and without wasting precious water to evaporation or runoff.


The use of ollas for irrigation was introduced to the American Southwest by Spanish conquistadors during Colonial times, becoming very common among Native American tribes and Hispanic settlers. Though the technique gave way to more modern methods of irrigation some time ago, its superior efficiency, coupled with its simplicity, has caused it to make a comeback. Though the technique has changed little since its introduction, today’s ollas are usually capped off, making them even more water-efficient.


Perfect for home gardens, Ollas are a super-easy, eco-friendly, less time-consuming way to water annuals, perennials, herbs, vegetables and plants of all kinds in dry, sandy soil, very hot or drought-prone areas, raised beds, and even pots, planters and hanging baskets. Fill the olla before you leave on a short vacation to enjoy worry-free watering – and a smaller water bill!

How it Works:


Water is pulled directly through the terra-cotta!


Read more about Ollas on our blog.

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