2 Minutes With ... Lindsay Scherr Burgess, Founder and 'Moss Boss' of Green Wallscapes
Lindsay Scherr Burgess is the founder and "moss boss" of Green Wallscapes, a company that brings professional spaces to life with preserved moss, logos, lettering and art. She employs five moss artists in her West Palm beach studio. The company has worked for brands including Amazon, Starbucks, Stella Artois, AutoNation and Adidas, developers like Aimco, AMLI, Zom, Weinstein Properties and Greystone, plus spas and dispensaries worldwide.
Her projects have been featured in Architectural Digest, Veranda Magazine and Palm Beach Illustrated, among others. In 2019, Green Wallscapes was selected to participate in the prestigious Kips Bay Decorator Showhouse.
Lindsay’s background is diverse; she has worked in organic produce, construction, commercial real estate and book publishing. She loves to travel, speaks fluent Italian and can be found painting, doing yoga and jet-skiing (when not taking care of her newborn). Lindsay graduated from Northwestern University, and lives in West Palm Beach with her entrepreneurial husband, Jon, and baby daughter, Skylar.
We spent two minutes with Lindsay to learn more about her background, her creative inspirations and recent work she's admired.
Lindsay, tell us...
Where you grew up, and where you live now.
I grew up in Washington, D.C., spent 10 years in Chicago, and am currently defrosting in Sunny South Florida.
How you first got interested in cannabis.
I think the way most people do… in college! HA! From a business perspective, there are just natural synergies between what we create in our moss wall studio and the cannabis world. People frequently ask if they can smoke our walls. (Which they cannot).
One of your favorite projects you’ve ever worked on, and why.
We make over 180 moss walls and art for clients all over the U.S. and Canada per year. It's really hard to choose. I would say my favorite dispensary work we've done recently is for Insa because we've gotten to use bright colored moss that looks like their rocket logo is shooting off the wall.
A recent project you’re proud of, and why.
We recently did a moss archway piece with 11 different colors and textures in it. I just loved the design because it felt really original and out of the box. We love a design challenge in how we can push the envelope with this natural material.
The biggest challenge cannabis marketers face today, and how to approach it.
I would say saturation and differentiation. Here in West Palm, for example, there are five dispensaries and smoke shops on one street. How is someone supposed to know who to choose? The high design locations seem to be more popular, which is a huge plus for us! We want to be part of those Instagrammable/TikTokable moments. I think the more elegant and original design comes about, the more socially acceptable cannabis use will become. In most cases, our moss walls are the defining look for the brand itself.
One thing about how the cannabis industry is evolving that you're excited about.
Since I work in the interior design space, the very cool design that we are seeing across the country to make spaces for people to come and buy cannabis is a direct result of this changing attitude towards it. It’s taken something from the black market to something elevated. Some dispensaries we work with are stunningly beautiful with incredible finishes. The clientele they attract is directly proportionate to the amount they invest in the design of their space from what I have seen. A dispensary that invests in a beautiful space will differentiate itself.
Someone else's work, in cannabis or beyond, that you admired lately.
I love Sara Blakely from Spanx. She sold her company for $1.2 billion and gave all her employees a two-week vacation and $10,000 to go enjoy themselves. I am truly inspired that she spread the love to her team. That is amazing. She is also incredibly down to earth, even with a billion dollars. I love that she gives back and also keeps it real without (too much) ego, while leading with a feminine way of doing business. Her products are also fantastic.
A book, movie, TV show or podcast you recently found inspiring.
I love anything by Derek Sivers. All of his books are super consumable and make you think differently. Probably my favorite is "Anything You Want," because it’s his journey of building a business by saying yes and solving a simple problem for people he already knew. It also talks very candidly of how he fixed his mistakes and kept going and creating. I really resonate with that. You have to always be evolving.
A visual artist or band/musician you admire.
I follow a ton of artists on Instagram from all my visits to Art Basel Miami Beach over the years. One of my favorite artists is named Alex Yanes. He is a Miami-based artist who has super original, bright, and colorful art. He is also a very humble and kind human. I just love his work. I hope at some point to do a Green Wallscapes collaboration with him!
Your favorite fictional character.
She-Ra and the princess of power. That was my AOL username forever (I might be dating myself). I absolutely loved that as a child. I haven’t seen it in forever, but it gives me the warm fuzzies. Second best, Jem and the Rockers.
Someone worth following in social media.
Your main strength as a marketer/creative.
I am able to bridge the gap between the creative and the practical really well. The majority of my job is not creative (I'm always talking about substrates, fireproofing and edging, and a little about design) and I would say I have pretty good organizing power.
Your biggest weakness.
Not innovating fast enough. I am still worried that TikTok is going to steal all the information off my phone, which is why I don’t do it on a regular basis. I also have new mom brain, which means I forget things all the time.
Something people would find surprising about you.
That I have bright pink hair on the back of my head (under my other hair). I'm all business in the front with brown hair, and magenta in the back. I have to be able to speak with developers and architects who may expect a slightly more professional person, but I think there is this wild creative part of me that also needs to be expressed. The pink does that for me.
One thing that always makes you happy.
My daughter. She's amazing.
One thing that always makes you sad.
The big problems of the world, and that I can’t really do much about them.
What you’d be doing if you weren't in the cannabis industry.
I would be doing what I am doing now—mossing it up with my awesome team. Another dream is to be retired in Italy, but that is a few years off from now.