Volunteers working to identify plants before reshelving. (Sale photos are from pre-COVID days.)

Volunteers working to identify plants before reshelving. (Sale photos are from pre-COVID days.)

Friends School Plant Sale is entirely volunteer-run.

Over 1,400 people are needed to do everything from building display tables to shelving plants, and from tallying up orders to packing it all up after the sale is over. Hear from some of our long-time volunteers here.

Each volunteer is expected to work four hours. Find out about your specific shift time when you sign up.

Here is a list of the 2021 volunteer jobs with descriptions and a general idea of which days and times they occur on (pdf). Note: If you don't see a particular job that's listed here when you go to sign up, that means the job has filled.

Sign up here 

Pre-sale: Each year, volunteers are invited to shop at the pre-sale. NEW this year, the pre-sale is on Wednesday from 1:00 to 8:30 p.m. (Volunteers will sign up for Wednesday shopping entry times.) They also receive an extra discount for their Sunday shopping. You can find more info in our FAQ.

What needs to be done by volunteers? Volunteer jobs generally fall into the following categories:

  • Tasks before the sale week
  • Setup (before the sale)
  • Plant receiving and shelving (before and during the sale)
  • During the sale
  • Clean up (after the sale)


COVID safety

We need volunteers more than ever this year, and we’re doing everything possible to make the sale a safe place for everyone to be, as you can see from the changes to make the sale outdoors and much more spaced out to allow for social distancing (Doing the Sale). 

Here's the link to our volunteer webinar, which gives an overview of the changes and how they affect volunteers. Note: you need both the link and the pass code to view the webinar. In the recording, the content starts at about 21:30.
Link to the webinar AND copy the passcode: 9#rL%=A8
This is the Q&A from the webinar as a PDF (it wasn't embedded in the Zoom session, unfortunately).

Here's the basic outline of COVID requirements that affect volunteers:

  • All volunteers are equally responsible for implementing and complying with the COVID plan
  • Before entering the fenced area of the sale where the Volunteer Desk is located, volunteers will stop at the Volunteer Screening Area for a temperature check and to verify that they have completed the Daily Health Screening Form.  
  • Volunteers will be required to wear a mask that covers their nose and mouth at all times unless inside their personal vehicle.
  • Masks are defined as: if sewn, consisting of at least two layers of material (no single-layer bandanas, scarves, or gaiters). If manufactured, a surgical mask or N-95-type mask that does not include a vent. Face shields can be used in addition to a mask, but not alone.
  • At the sale, maintain social distancing of at least six feet between volunteers and customers. 
  • Wash or sanitize hands throughout the day. Hand-sanitizer dispensers will be placed at entrances and other locations.

As state guidance from the Department of Health changes, our planning and that official preparedness plan will also change. 

You can read our full 11-page COVID preparedness plan here (pdf)