by Jaime Verazin
I began scattering seeds of the idea of Broadway Botanist one year ago. Gardening has always been a hobby of mine and since moving to New York about ten years ago, I made it my mission to surround myself with green regardless of a lack of yard. So in came creative ways of having vertical indoor gardens. ;)
I’ve always been a lover of home design and organization, too, which proves super helpful when living in small New York spaces. Any time friends would come over, they would leave wanting to clear out their home or make it feel more cozy and happy, so I guess this idea of a seed had been brewing all my life
It officially started when I began to bring plants into Broadway dressing rooms. People would linger in our space, or would comment on enjoying the room while doing day work, or that they could breathe easier (because of great air filtration).
And so the women of Bandstand on Broadway actually named this idea “Broadway Botanist.” They shared how important having the plants and a beautifully designed room made all the difference for their show and so it began!
I never expected for this life hobby to become my new life’s passion! But my non-tangible dream has always been to wave my magic wand around all the sad tree pits and dead window boxes and make them bloom. Slowly but surely, like a new tree, this dream is actually happening. Thanks to Mikey Winslow, my magical Install Partner who jumped on board a believer, and Colby Lindeman, my Pot Design Partner with creativity beyond the stage and nurturing grace, this idea has bloomed. Also, Mark Stuart, my fiancé and patient partner, has been so supportive even when everyone’s installs were taking over the living room at home. It takes a community sharing to make this kind of thing grow. Ultimately, it wouldn’t exist without everyone who has decided to garden with me by saying yes to green.
I love that I get to bounce around creating new experiences for people. Whether it’s a surprise return home from tour gift, or a dressing room install, a tree plant rescue from an office about to throw them out, to plants in the meditation circle of our classes, it’s beautiful every time to see how we, as people, have such a connection to nature.
I love that I can now “go to work” in this workshop (that is still being setup) to truly house and maximize the growth of this jungle. To dream of each stunning human and their happiness in the space. Refuge. Relaxation. Joy! The Broadway Botanist Greenhouse is going to be a community space, too, for workshops, plant happy hours and all sorts of things. I love that I have decided to only do what I love, while still auditioning, bouncing over to teach a partnering class, and sparking joy in people’s lives. And that there is room, relief, and more to explore every single day.