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4010 Mt Diablo Blvd.
Lafayette, CA, 94549

Located in the Bay Area, CA, we're a family-owned garden center offering unusual and hard-to-find plants & gifts. Established 1946.

Life is Beautiful Blog

Employee Spotlight: Carolyn Russell

Stephanie Kirk

 Carolyn Russell, middle, has worked at Orchard Nursery & Florist for over 27 years. 

Carolyn Russell, middle, has worked at Orchard Nursery & Florist for over 27 years. 

If you’ve spent any time at the nursery over the past 27 years, you’ve definitely seen Carolyn Russell hard at work in the floral department. Carolyn started at Orchard Nursery & Florist in 1989 as a floral designer and is now the buyer and manager for both the Florist and the seasonal Christmas Shop.

We sat down with Carolyn and asked her a few questions about her life and time here at Orchard. Keep reading to get to know Carolyn a bit better! Next time you’re at the nursery, make sure to stop by the floral department and say hi!

What is your favorite part about working at Orchard?

We have great people at Orchard – both staff and customers – and I love waking up every morning and coming to work to see these great people. I love creating wonderful displays, and I love hunting high and low for distinctive products to showcase, highlight and sell in our floral department.

What are some of your favorite memories in your time working here?

I love being part of a family here at Orchard. We embrace people above all else; welcoming babies, attending beautiful weddings and experiencing life events with our family bring me great joy. Professionally, my favorite memory has to be traveling to Frankfurt, Germany for the Christmas shop. I take great pride in being able to customize our product selection so that it is unique to our store, and traveling to such a beautiful part of the world was a wonderful and fascinating experience.

What are some upcoming projects you are excited about?

We are currently planning the Christmas Shop! I love the holidays and thoroughly enjoy every phase of the project. Currently, we are pricing all of the goodies, and then we install the store in late September and open to customers in late October. We are open to the public for about 10 weeks, then we move out of the shop as our Garden Shop moves back in. Presto chango! Our team has a blast making it all happen!

What do you do in your spare time? Any hobbies?

In my spare time, I love challenging myself by creating handmade jewelry as a part of my jewelry line, Silver Leaf Designs. I will occasionally participate and show off my work in evening events here at the nursery, and I can also be found at local shows around the Bay Area. You can also find me with my family. I’ve been married 32 wonderful years and have two beautiful boys.

 An original piece by Silver Leaf Designs

An original piece by Silver Leaf Designs

What is your favorite season?

My favorite season is anytime flowers are blooming!

What is your favorite flower to work with?

My favorite flowers are Hydrangeas; there are so many colors and varieties and they are full and luscious, yet simple and refined. I love them because of their ability to bring me instant joy: any time, anywhere!

What is something that people might not know about you?

I have participated in Bouquets to Art on many occasions. This wonderful program usually takes place at the de Young Museum in San Francisco. It is an opportunity to bring the world of nature and fine art together. It’s an incredibly exciting and humbling event to be a part of.