I also have a thing for botanical gardens - the ones I know well are in New York, Atlanta and Rio de Janeiro, having spent the most time in those. They calm and soothe me and envelop me in their beauty. They are always changing from season to season and provide a sense of spiritual solace for me.
I still recall well the first time I went to the Brooklyn Botanical Garden - BBG. It was the beginning of spring, it was several years of working in the gray concrete jungle and I always had an itch for escaping it. At work we had one volunteer day per year that was mandatory and I always did gardening - I was probably that weird girl who wouldn't stop digging the dirt and pulling out weeds because at the end of the day they'd say "it's time to go" and I could barely bring myself to stop. I found it so therapeutic and loved getting my hands dirty, I loved the physicality of it - so far away from my desk in the corporate tower in the concrete jungle where I felt like a caged animal when I had to stay in the office too long, which for me, was probably any time at all. I even became the volunteer organizer - leading the teams and volunteering even more! No surprise there. I think I took over 1,000 pictures that first visit to the BBG since it seemed like I hadn't seen green and flowers in a million years. It will sound like I exaggerate to the average reader, yet I promise you, this is how intensely I felt it. I was trying to capture those moments and feelings of spending an entire day in bliss - it felt like I'd stepped into some sort of green heaven, a green oasis in the middle of the gray concrete jungle. That was only the beginning - soon I'd become a regular there, then to the larger New York Botanical Gardens in the Bronx - NYBG.
Whenever I was in Rio in Brazil, I wanted to practically live in the botanical gardens there. Someone even told me that I should live in a spa - which I often repeated. Then another apt observer cheekily told me that I should live in a spa inside the botanical garden! Maybe this will be one of my creations. So now, wherever I am, whenever in a place that has gardens, I am a magnet and sure to find them and seek them out. It's called eco-therapy for a reason.