May We Introduce
Although we may not have had the pleasure of meeting all of you face to face we thought it would be nice if you could see our smiling faces and find out a little more about where we’ve come from and why we love doing what we do!
Elke was born in the heart of the Blackforest in Rheinfelden, Germany and after studying floral design for three years she successfully completed her Master’s Degree in floral arrangement.
Upon completion of her apprenticeship, she worked for an additional two years in a commercial nursery and then a move to Munich brought her to a position in the city’s famous flower auction. From there she purchased and managed a very successful flower shop in Munich and continued to build on her thriving career.
A number of summer vacations to Canada’s west coast spurred on her desire to immigrate and in 1996 she was able to make that dream come true! Soon thereafter she co-founded Botanus and has been one of the driving forces behind our continued growth.
Elke is our resident ‘organizer extraordinaire’ and extremely passionate about our business. In particular, she’s the driving force behind our commitment to make the mail order experience for our customers not just good but a real “Wow!” - an experience that everyone will want to have again and again! As well, Elke is the one who’s responsible for most of the wonderful plant photos you see in our catalogues and on the web site. We’re of the opinion that ‘in the garden’ shots are much more realistic and appealing than staged studio shots and to that end she goes to great lengths to snap just the right images for you to enjoy.
She’s also the brain-child behind our new on-line Botanus Garden Club!
Elke is a non-stop 'life learner' who enjoys giving informative presentations to garden clubs.
A skier, kayaker, DIY guru, avid reader and drummer, Elke is a true powerhouse!
When we asked Elke how she recycles and reuses things in her garden she replied,
“Plastic, paper, green waste etc. is all separated. I grew up in Europe and recycling has always been a part of my life. I use a composter and collect rainwater as well."
For more of Elke’s gardening insights visit Our Gardens page.
A native Vancouverite, Pam’s love of gardening began years ago when she was allowed to explore all the nooks and crannies of her Grandparent’s special sunken garden - immigrants from Germany who had created a unique and inviting European-style garden in and around their Vancouver home.
This initial childhood exposure to lush greenery and the delicate beauty of flowering plants was a special seed planted that blossomed into a passion some years later.
After graduating from UBC with a Fine Arts degree, Pam pursued an active career in theatre, television and film and was even one of seven initial baristas to be hired by Starbucks in 1987 when they opened their very first outlet in Vancouver! After having become a wiz at creating the perfect espresso and being part of building a successful business from scratch, her career path then took her to Munich, Germany where she worked for one of Europe’s leading marketing consultation companies before returning to Canada and her “roots”.
Pam’s flair for the artistic, her organizational expertise and business acumen can be seen in all that she does - from building a highly successful business, to creating the Botanus print catalogues and as well as appearing as a regularly invited gardening expert on television. Pam has also become a regular guest on C-FAX Victoria where she shares her knowledge and expertise on Gardening 101 hosted by Jeffry de Jong, radio host and Site Manager at the internationally renowned Abkhazi Garden.
She also LOVES being part of the new Botanus Garden Club where she gets to have her ‘theatrical’ kick in front of the camera!
For the last couple of years Pam has been busily writing her first novel, Flour Garden, a fun-filled adventure that will especially delight gardeners. It’s now been published and can be ordered here on Botanus or via Amazon.ca
Her hobbies and interests, aside from gardening, include reading, writing, knitting and enjoying the great outdoors!
We asked Pam what her favourite colour throughout her garden is she replied
“Green! I’m known in my circle of family and friends as the ‘green lady’ not only because I love to wear the colour green but I adore it in the garden. There are so many different shades of green to choose from and they all give me a sense of peace and tranquility.”
Want to find out more about Pam & her garden? Visit Our Gardens page.
Growing up in North Vancouver and Richmond, British Columbia, Wendy was actually born in Summerside, PEI. She is the customer care manager for Botanus and many of you have had the distinct pleasure of speaking with her on the phone or corresponding with her via email. In her own words, Wendy loves her job!
Although she’s been interested in gardening ever since she can remember, her real love affair with plants started when she was a teenager and sold daffodils from her garden to neighbours and passerbys and Wendy has since enjoyed her own garden spaces throughout the years. Her work life has always revolved around customer service and sales so she brings with her a wealth of experience having worked for many well-respected retailers.
When the opportunity opened up to work with Botanus and blend her work skills with her love of gardening, she fairly leaped at the chance and we’re so glad she did! At home Wendy has a fabulous and exuberant front yard garden that she’s had fun playing with for over twenty years.
During the shipping season Wendy finds herself irresistibly drawn to the warehouse - she actually looks for excuses to go out there and wander through the aisles making her wish list as she goes. Wendy is an admitted book ‘junkie’, an avid hiker and kayaker and she loves to cook. She possesses an uninhibitedly enthusiastic personality that shines through everything she does.
Wendy is an avid Toastmaster and this year will serve as VP of Education for the Langley Toastmasters Club 2743. The advanced Toastmaster training has also been crucial in helping her be in front of the camera with Pam and Elke filming the Botanus Garden Club Episodes.
When she’s not in the garden she can be found baking, reading or knitting in her cozy little home.
We asked Wendy how many hours a week she spends in her garden she said,
"Depending on the season it can be as little as half an hour or it can be from sunrise to after sunset. That’s when I’ve been dragged in by family members worried they might never see me again!
If you’d like to read more of Wendy’s insights into the world of gardening visit Our Gardens page.