Party day essentials
- Enough tools to share for the work at hand—spades, forks, trowels, buckets, etc.
- Source of water (plus hose or watering cans)
- Extra pairs of gardening gloves
- Soil amendments, such as compost, manure and mulch (either a bulk order for big jobs or a few bags for smaller patches)
- Containers for potting up and suitable potting soil
- Transplant solution
- Cleanup equipment, such as bags for yard waste and garbage, broom and dustpan
- Dollar-store hats and bandanas
- Chairs in shady spots (the new homeowner might not have garden furniture, so bring some along). If the garden has no shade, consider bringing patio umbrellas or renting a small canopy as well
- Big containers stocked with lots of cold drinks, such as lemonade or iced tea
- Easy, no-cook snacks such as crudités and dip, cold, herbed vegetable pasta salad, antipasto platter and hard cheeses; seasonal fruit; cookies and squares
- Non-breakable patio serving ware such as brightly coloured paper plates, melamine platters, goblets and paper napkins (or bring out the real deal—china, glassware and linens)
- Garden-themed decorations, if desired
If new beds are being made or old ones refurbished, arrange for an advance crew of volunteers to prep them a week or two before the party. If necessary, rent a tiller to deal with nasty, compacted soil and larger areas.
For more modest plots, small patches of soil can be worked on the day of the party.