When the Lilac Fire in San Diego County broke out on Dec. 7, Rainforest Flora in Bonsall, CA, was overcome by flames. The 8.5-acre nursery owned by Paul Isley and Jerry Robinson said the fire was “so powerful and fast,” according to a Dec. 12 article in the Daily Breeze, a local media hub.
The nursery cultivated hundreds of rare Tillandsia air plants, and the financial loss is in the millions. But Isley’s focus is on helping three families who were long-time employees and caretakers living on the property, who lost everything.
“They had the clothes on their backs, and that’s it,” Isley said in the article.
Isley has set up a GoFundMe page to raise money for the families and begin the rebuilding phase. To date, the fund has raised $20,000 of the $25,000 goal. The nursery employs more than 30 people who rely on the business, which was not insured for fire. With other greenhouse and nursery businesses around them untouched, Isley said the destruction of his business was, “just the luck of the draw.”
“We have spent over 40 years building a nursery and growing irreplaceable plants that can take decades to mature for sale,” stated the business owners on the fundraising page. “Please, please help our families rebuild. Donations from this campaign will go directly towards the caretakers’ family and helping rebuild our nursery. We appreciate all your help, and send our thoughts and prayers to all victims of the devastating California wildfires,”
Read the full story on the Daily Breeze.