Hi! I’m Cara


I am an artist, illustrator, surface designer and educator from Ann Arbor, Michigan. My work represents the synthesis of my background in biology, policy, agriculture, and art. Cara’s Garden is a place where I grow flowers and food and create a beautiful space for friends and family. The garden -- and my connection to nature -- provide endless inspiration for my work creating botanically themed art in watercolor, oil, and repeating patterns.


~ Cara's Garden ~


I was not a very good gardener until I moved to the Midwest. Growing vegetables on the side of a mountain in California (think sandstone, clay, dry…), was reserved for people with serious commitment and serious know-how. The Midwest on the other hand (Illinois in particular), was really good on the ego. The combination of rich soil, long warm days with plenty of sunshine, and consistent rain will make a gardener out of just about anyone. My very first garden in the summer of 2012 was amazing-- I really impressed myself:) So much so, that I started a blog called Cara’s Garden so that I could tell my family friends all about my new skills. And 12 years later, I’m still here. The blog turned into a full blown website at some point along the way--and the garden became my center. 

Over time the garden became such an important part of my life that our hunt for a house when we moved to Ann Arbor was completely directed by the garden that a house was attached to. So after a year of looking, we came upon a gorgeous garden, with a sweet little green house attached to it. And almost 5 years after moving in, the garden and I are getting to know each other. The world outside my back door not only provides food, flowers, herbs,  and summer shade, but is also my personal sanctuary. The garden is where the things I love come together--food, herbs, and flowers to grow for family meals, home-grown medicine, and endless inspiration for my botanical art.

Education & Background

BA — Biology, emphasis in plant ecology - University of California, Santa Barbara, College of Creative Studies

MPA — Environmental Science and Policy - Columbia University, School of International and Public Affairs

Executive Director — The Land Connection, Champaign, Illinois

Associate Director — Tropical Forest Group, San Diego, California

I believe

Black Lives Matter
Women’s Rights are Human Rights
Trans People Belong
No Human is Illegal
Science is Real
Love is Love
We are all Immigrants