ABOUT THE OWNER / how flourish came to be
Bay Area native Brandi Chalker is a reformed plant killer who now describes herself as a "crazy plant lady," and one of her greatest passions (in addition to political activism, perfectly crafted cocktails, and delicious home-cooked meals) is sharing her love of plants with anyone who will listen.
Brandi's plant journey began in 2011 in San Francisco, when she opened a succulent nursery in the backyard of Urban Bazaar, the store she owned at the time. There, she created San Francisco's first DIY succulent planting station called The Succulent Bar. She also began teaching people how to make succulent terrariums, which is now her most popular workshop.
She left retail in 2012 to launch Sunshine & Succulents, through which she’s been teaching botanical workshops and designing plant arrangements ever since. When she was diagnosed with breast cancer a month after launching Sunshine & Succulents, she discovered the therapeutic and healing benefits of working with plants, which helped keep her sane during a long and stressful journey to remission. She still relies on “terrarium therapy” as a way to find a bit of peace in this chaotic world.
In 2015, Brandi, her husband Wes, and their dog Maus moved from San Francisco to Petaluma, where Brandi was born. Looking to put down roots again with a brick and mortar space for her business, Brandi purchased a home and garden store, Radish, in 2017. It was clear that a new name was needed to fuse her two businesses together, and so Radish and Sunshine & Succulents have now become Flourish, a place for Petalumans to be inspired by plants and to find objects of beauty to brighten up their days.
WORKSHOP INSTRUCTORS / inspirers of creativity
Kaelen Van Cura got her first plant, which she named Been (as in “has been”), when she was six years old. Ever since then, she’s been using her green thumb to care for an ever-expanding menagerie of plants. When she’s not gardening or making terrariums, she is creating jewelry under the name Darling Marcelle.
Kaelen teaches many of our corporate team building workshops and private workshops, and occasionally teaches our public workshops in San Francisco too.
Grace Kent is native Californian who first discovered her love for gardening at age eight, when a relative took her to a nursery for the first time; ever since, she has loved to visit plant nurseries around Sonoma County to get inspiration for her next gardening projects.
Grace is especially interested in herbs and their uses for personal enrichment and for their medicinal qualities, and she finds great joy in maintaining her succulent and air plant collections. In her spare time, you’ll find her getting creative and sewing, creating costumes for theater and for her many other side projects in the performing arts realm.
RETAIL TEAM / answerers of plant questions, givers of gift advice
Kate Grenert has worked a variety of jobs over the years, but she always comes back to working with plants. She loves chatting with our customers about plant care and learning new things about plants on a daily basis.
When she's not at work or fussing over her personal jungalow, you’ll find her doing some outdoor gardening, in the kitchen trying out new recipes, or managing her menagerie of pets.
Sandy Molina loves spending time in her garden, being surrounded by plants at Flourish, and helping people fine beautiful plants to decorate their homes.
She is also an artisan, specializing in repurposing and upcycling beautiful textiles through her business, Full Circle Designs. Her work includes a line of handbags, pillow shams, and other home decor items, many of which are made from vintage grain sacks.
Pamela Durr is a Sonoma County native whose love for plants sprouted at a young age in her family’s Gravenstein orchard in Sebastopol, where her grandfather taught her about being a steward of the land. Her love for plants has only grown through her studies of Environmental Science at UC Berkeley and formerly working at a nursery in Sebastopol.
When she’s not surrounded by plants at Flourish, she works from home for a non-profit specializing in anti-racism organizing and trainings. This gives her flexibility to explore the natural beauty of Sonoma County with young daughter. In any spare time left, she can be found in her garden or behind a sewing machine.