Bucket Brigade is a fun community event that rescues unused buckets, plants them up with veggies, and gives them to the people!
Here’s how it works:
- Call around to find food-safe buckets (bakeries and restaurants are a good bet) or unwanted plant pots (check with local parks departments and nurseries)
- Decide what you want to do with the buckets - plant them up with vegetable starts? Fill them with potting soil and hold a seed swap? Fill them up with compost for people to take home to their yards? Or maybe even fill them with donated garden tools or books - when people get home they have a new container or a weeding bucket!
- Decide whether you want to give them away or sell them, perhaps as a fundraiser for a community organization.
- Round up some potting soil or compost - check with local compost companies or nurseries for donations.
- Grow, buy, or find a donation of vegetable plants and/or seeds.
- Find a location - parking lots (check with local schools or churches) or other accessible, open spaces.
- Advertise your event - we have specially designed Bucket Brigade posters - contact us!
- Gather supplies and props for your event, like shovels, tables, and signs.
- Prepare a handout, flyer, or postcard on container gardening - contact us - we can help!
- Hold your event!
Questions about holding a Bucket Brigade? Just get in touch.
If you want to talk to others about Bucket Brigade and recruit some Brigadiers, join Urban Land Army! You may meet people there from where you live, and you can get together and get things sorted.
The plan is to spread Bucket Brigade worldwide. There are a lot of buckets out there and Bucket Brigade is a great way to help people get started with growing some of their own food.
So jump in and take Bucket Brigade to the streets of your city! Team up with a food bank, a school, community garden, or set up shop in front of your house. Bucket Brigades are great fundraisers for community groups, and are good free fun as well!
We even have stickers to pretty up your buckets:
Bucket Brigade Events
St. Vincent de Paul Food Bank and ULA Headquarters
In the fall of 2008, we rounded up 110 food-safe buckets from a local bakery and filled them with potting soil, winter-hardy veggies, and set up a booth outside a local food bank. There was a Cooking Bucket with cooking greens like collards, chard, kale, beet greens, and pac choi, and a Fresh Eats Bucket with hardy lettuce mixes with names like “Arctic Tundra.” We had some buckets left over, so the following weekend we sold them outside Urban Land Army Headquarters. In just 3 hours on a rainy Saturday morning, 70 veggie buckets found a home.
The best part:
The idea behind our Bucket Brigade was that long-time and brand new gardeners would be able to fend for themselves a bit food-wise, learn about winter gardening, and keep these buckets planted year round. To top it all off, the buckets we used could not be recycled in Seattle so we made a small dent in the landfill.
Rainier Beach Community Center
Together with the fine folks of the Healthy and Active Rainier Valley Coalition, we held a Bucket Brigade at the Rainier Beach Community Center in Seattle, where unsuspecting but pleased visitors took home 30 buckets of free soil and handfuls of seed packs!
Rainier Valley Safeway