By Molly Snyder Senior Writer Published Oct 28, 2020 at 1:31 PM

Michelle Alfaro has been an uber enthusiast of plants and herbs for her entire life. Thus, she and business partner Mag Rodriguez recently launched a leafy green business, Maranta Plant Shop, that hosts monthly pop-ups at local restaurants, businesses and residential communities. They will also offer U.S shipping services and local plant delivery in November.

Maranta's first pop-up plant sale takes place Sunday, Nov. 1 at Zocalo Food Park, 636 S. 6th St. at noon. This event is a touchless experience and pre-oder only. Masks are required.

Pre-order your plants here:

Maranta's first plant pop-up collection includes Calathea Pinstripe, Monstera, Silver Satin Pothos, Snake plants and a ZZ plants.

"For as long as I can remember I have had profound respect and passion for our relationship with the earth via our connection with plants," says Alfaro. "Plants bring life home, they purify the air, and have even been proven to lift people's mood."

The idea for the business is rooted in the coronavirus pandemic and the reality that people are spending more time at home and therefor focused on making safe and welcoming spaces. When the pandemic started, people reached out to Alfaro for help with buying and growing house plants, and one of those friends was Rodriguez.

"He has almost a decade of entrepreneurial experience and he brought up the idea to me about selling my own plants in a conversation. This led to us doing research, building relationships with nurseries and then this past September we finally decided to just go for it," says Alfaro.

Alfara sees a strong connection between plants and her ancestral roots. "As someone who is Caribbean and Central American – and my partner who is Mexican – our family history is connected to plants," she says. "I love being in the plant community because there aren't enough people who look like me in this space and I hope I can inspire more Black and Brown people to reconnect with plants and benefit from the positive effect they have in our lives."

Fore more information, go to the website or follow Maranta Plant Shop on social media:
Instagram: @marantplantshop 

Molly Snyder started writing and publishing her work at the age 10, when her community newspaper printed her poem, "The Unicorn.” Since then, she's expanded beyond the subject of mythical creatures and written in many different mediums but, nearest and dearest to her heart, thousands of articles for OnMilwaukee.

Molly is a regular contributor to FOX6 News and numerous radio stations as well as the co-host of "Dandelions: A Podcast For Women.” She's received five Milwaukee Press Club Awards, served as the Pfister Narrator and is the Wisconsin State Fair’s Celebrity Cream Puff Eating Champion of 2019.