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Gardener shares 'genius' hack to keep your plants fully watered for just $5: '[It's] kind of like magic'

This is an innovative and simple way to potentially save lots of water.

Cheap watering hack, Plants fully watered for just $5

Photo Credit: @thecottagepeach / TikTok

A gardener is showing viewers how to water their entire garden using only a $5 pot. 

In a brief TikTok video, The Cottage Peach (@thecottagepeach), who has more than 58,000 followers, shows viewers this creative way to water their garden while saving lots of water in the long term.

"Kind of like magic," she says.

@thecottagepeach Olla (pronounced oh-ya) means "pot" in Spanish, but the concept of using ollas as an irrigation system goes back thousands of years and has been used in countless cultures around the world. An olla watering system is basically any type of unglazed clay pot that is buried beneath the soil with only a small amount sticking up above the surface and filled with water. You can tell that a pot is unglazed because it will be that classic terracotta red color with no shiny finish, glaze or paint. The water then leeches out of tiny holes or "pores" in the unglazed clay and is pulled through the soil to the roots of your thirsty plants through a process called soil moisture tension. This functions much the same way as osmosis, in that the water is trying to equalize to a certain level of moisture within the soil. This means your soil will never become overwatered either - if the soil is moist, the water stays in the pot until it is needed. Will you try this in your garden? #olla #ollapot #oya #gardenhacks #gardenhacksandtips #gardentools #wateringplants ♬ original sound - The Cottage Peach

The scoop 

The gardener begins by showing viewers a $5 terra-cotta pot and explains how she covered the hole in the middle with "special moldable glue."

She places the pot into a hole in the soil and describes how "as the soil dries out it's going to pull moisture from the inside of the pot to the outside." 

"An 8-inch pot can water up to 2 feet away on all sides," she adds, and finishes by informing viewers that this method also "encourages plants to develop stronger root systems."

How it's helping

This method can be extremely helpful when it comes to saving water. Each day across the U.S., Americans use approximately 8 billion gallons of water for outdoor water use alone. 

If enough gardeners adopted similar methods when irrigating their gardens, an enormous amount of water could potentially be saved on a cumulative basis. 

However, having a garden still saves lots of water when compared to owning a traditional grass lawn, since native grasses and plants naturally require less water than more commonly used grass. 

Saving water is especially important today, given that human industrial activities are warming our planet, and heat waves and droughts are becoming more common and more severe. 

The U.S., for example, is continuously getting hit by increasingly powerful heat waves and droughts. It's just one reason why we need to learn about better ways to reduce our water footprint. 

What's everyone saying?

Commenters had plenty of questions and comments about this innovative and simple way to potentially save lots of water. 

"This is genius," one said. 

"If you put some water over the rocks in the lid, bees can come in to have a little drink and rest before continuing with their amazing bee work!" another added. 

Another commenter brought a bit of humor into the situation. 

"Not me waiting for you to fill up the pot and dump it on your entire garden several times," they wrote. 

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