Kara Bjornlie enjoys every aspect of design. She has a particular interest in planting as a medium to paint with color, texture and sensation. Her extensive knowledge of native, adapted, and introduced plant species contribute to her role as a planting design expert and mentor in our studios. Two recent projects include Kaiser Permanente’s renovated South Bay medical office building and replacement hospital and the Evans Residence. Kara managed the multi-phased medical campus’s landscape architecture, including design of several outdoor break-out spaces; an event space used for a farmers market, health fairs and musical performances; a meditation garden; sensory garden; dining patio and the ‘Thrive path’, a marked exercise circuit for patients, staff and visitors. The complex project included stormwater run-off filtration planters to meet new low impact development standards on top of a parking structure. In contrast, for the Evans residence Kara managed the renovation of a 100-year-old Pasadena estate’s gardens to meet the updated needs of the family while preserving the enchanting features of Early California Eclecticism: ancient Olives, Eucalyptus and Oaks; formal rose gardens and sandstone walls. Kara’s attention to detail, materials, and craftsmanship are among her contributions to award-winning landscape architecture projects.