The Naked Botanical is Growing in the Garden State
In 1988 Anna Hackman moved to the east coast with her husband, and began working as a real estate lawyer after graduating from the School of Law at Miami University. Before living in Florida while attending University of Florida and University of Miami, Anna lived and grew up in Ohio. Ever since moving to the Garden State 33 years ago, however, she has called it her home. In addition to being an attorney, Anna started Green Talk, a blog dedicated to informing its readers about living a more healthy and sustainable lifestyle. She also started her own company, The Naked Botanical, where she sells her unique products made from fresh flowers and herbs that are home-grown on her farm located in Morris County.
Fifteen years ago Anna first began to garden, starting with just eight raised garden beds in her backyard. She grew a variety of fruits, vegetables, flowers, and of course, herbs. Over time she found her love for gardening growing, and worked to transform the small garden into a farm. As Anna began expanding the farm and growing more plants, she found herself with an abundance of beautiful herbs– herbs that had a vibrance to them that many other dried products were lacking. One day in 2015, upon her husband inquiring about what she was going to do with all of her produce, Anna decided to sell her dried herbs on Etsy.
After launching her Etsy store, Anna began to experiment with making teas from her plants as well. She noticed that the majority of teas sold in grocery stores used herb dust, which is less aromatic than using ground or whole herbs. The teas in the stores also contained natural– or worse, artificial– flavors that masked the taste of the herbs the teas were made with. Anna decided to create teas that highlighted the natural flavors of the herbs, and in 2018 she renamed her business to The Naked Botanical to reflect her expanding inventory. This new name demonstrated that her products went beyond dried herbs to include the teas, as well as flavored salts, hydrosols, salves.
Anna outsources some of her materials such as beeswax, additional lovage and select herbs from certified organic farms, and her farm became certified organic itself in 2019. Anna harvests her herbs at their peak growing, and then slow-dries and vacuum packs them for optimal freshness.
When not working, Anna enjoys watching mini-series, dancing, and tending to the fruits and vegetables in her garden. Her favorite thing about New Jersey is how pretty the natural landscapes are– and this appreciation of nature is reflected in her flavorful products that show what the Garden State truly has to offer.
- Tina Bologna