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Selecting and Caring for Furniture

Outdoor Furniture 101

If you’re looking to refurnish or update your outdoor areas, the possibilities are endless…and can sometimes be overwhelming. There are many all-weather furniture materials and styles on the market. Some of the most popular choices include wicker, wood and metal. Here’s a guide to clarify your options and help you make the most of your spaces.

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Good, Better, and Best Woods For Outdoor Furniture

Not all woods are created equal when it comes to year-round outdoor performance. Only a few varieties, out of the hundreds available, are durable enough to withstand drenching rains or the harsh rays of the sun.

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Wicker Furniture 101

A wicker furniture grouping can be an instant upgrade to the look and feel of any home. Built for real comfort, the classic design, soft contours and pleasing texture of woven wicker furniture is an invitation to sit back and enjoy some personal time relaxing or entertaining friends and family.

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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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