Michelle Castellano-Keller- Mellano & Co
I’ve known my flower friend Michelle for decades… we were kids in the Flower Industry – our Parents were great friends- and the entire Mellano Family has been Champions of the Flower Industry. I think- we most likely met at the Society of American Florists conventions- for most of my childhood- that was our family’s vacation… attending the SAF Convention- they were in wonderful locations- in wonderful hotels- and for years- they had Kids Programs- which meant – as kids of members- we would gather in the morning board a bus – and head to the hot spots in the cities where the conventions were hosted… we went to amusements parks, zoos, art museums, and even had dance parties… that’s where I met so many of my lifelong childhood friends in the world of flowers.
Today- My Friend Michelle is the current President Elect of the Society of American Florists… and a member of the American Academy of Floriculture (AAF) and she is absolutely wonderful. Michelle is one of the wisest- well spoken, charming flower friends I have. She’s a Successful Lawyer -(so when I tell you she’s wise- I mean it…) as well as being an Active Partner of the Mellano Flower Family Farm- She’s also a Loving Mother of 3 adorable children- and daughter of Batti and RoseMarie (Mellano) Castellano- and truly- one of my Favorite Friends!
Michelle’s Folks came to join us the day we filmed at the Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch. Battie and RoseMarie- just wanted to stop by- and say “hello”- because that is what they do… They are kind, comfortable and loving Italians- that wanted to pinch our cheeks- give us hugs- and make sure ‘all is well”. I love listening to Michelle’s stories about her Dad… she told me that some days were set for Eucalyptus Harvest at the Mellano Farm- and her Dad would cut and bunch Eucalyptus all day- and at night he would come home- she would climb into his lap- and he smelled like Eucalyptus- “that’s what my Dad smells like”… she recounted in her story! Growing up in the Flower Business- is amazing- and we all have wonderful stories- especially when it comes to multi-generational flower families!
Batti- (Michelle’s Dad) also loves my hair “Point”- a year or two ago- I was honored with the “Marketer of the Year Award” presented by Design Master Color Tool- at the Society of American Florists Convention- after the award breakfast- I stopped by to chat with Batti and RoseMarie- and visit- and Batti- gently ran his fingers up the POINT of my hair in front- and just smiled- ear to ear…that is just the way it is with the Castellanos- it’s like being with family…
This is the type of People Michelle- Her Parents- and Every one of the Mellanos and Castellanos are: they are flower people through and through- truly Flower Champions- and filled to the brim with Love and Kindness. It’s an honor to share my Friend Michelle Castellano-Keeler with you – as our Tour Guide to the World Famous Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch… I hope you enjoy this visit to Millions of Blooms of Flowers- with Michelle Castellano-Keeler- one of the Finest Friends I have!