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LiveWall® Green Wall Enlivens a Peet’s Coffee & Tea Store at an Upscale Mall in San Diego

May 5, 2016
May 5, 2016

Planted green walls offer a variety of benefits. They create appealing year-round beauty with seasonal colors, flowers and scents. In indoor applications, living walls purify the air and improve air quality by reducing airborne dust and particulates. They also absorb sound to reduce indoor noise. Through the natural process of evapotranspiration, green wall plants release water vapor that cools indoor air in summer and brings healthful moisture to dry, heated spaces in winter. They also provide social benefits — experiences of tranquility, respite and inspiration.

“Retailers also have bottom-line reasons for installing green walls. The unique effect of natural vegetation has been shown to draw shoppers into stores,” said Dave MacKenzie, the horticulturalist who invented LiveWall. “According to Terrapin Bright Green, LLC, an environmental consulting and planning firm, there is research evidence that consumers buy more in stores with carefully situated vegetation.”

The installation of a green wall in a Peet’s Coffee & Tea in San Diego illustrates how retailers are paying attention to the benefits of green architecture. The LiveWall® Green Wall System was used to construct a living wall, completed in February 2016, at a new Peet’s outlet at the Westfield Plaza Bonita Mall, located in San Diego’s South Bay area 15 minutes south of downtown. 

“Most customers enter the store through the patio from the parking lot. As they come into the store, the green wall is an unexpected, pleasant surprise,” said Russell E. Myers, AIA, REM Architects, Inc., the architecture firm that designed the store. “Inside, it establishes a buffer between the busy service area and the seating areas.”

LiveWall greens up two sections of the interior walls in the 1,700-square-foot store. The large section is 12 feet wide by 5.5 feet high. The smaller section is 6.5 feet wide by 5.5 feet high. After getting their coffee or tea, customers can relax with a natural view of tropical plants selected for variety in variegation, shades of green, colors (including yellow and red tones), texture, and shape. 

“A Peet’s in San Francisco added a green wall as an interior décor element. We thought a green wall would be a beautiful feature in our new store at Plaza Bonita,” said Steve Mora, president, MCS Consolidated Group, Inc., a Peet’s licensed partner with four stores. “It’s just like living art on the wall.”

Project Summary Outline

  • Name of Project: Peet’s Coffee & Tea (Westfield Plaza Bonita)
  • Project Address: 3060 Plaza Bonita Rd, National City, CA 91950
  • Installation Date: Completed February 2016
  • Type of Building/Facility: Retail (store in a mall)
  • Type of Installation: Indoor
  • Green Wall System: LiveWall® Indoor Living Wall
  • LiveWall Wall Planter Color: Black
  • LiveWall Planters: 52 planters (each 16 inches long)
  • Number of Plants: 150
  • Plant Palette: Indoor/Tropical
  • Size in Sq Ft: 100 sq ft (two sections, 6.5-ft wide x 5.5-ft high and 12-ft wide x 5.5 ft high)
  • Slope in Degrees: 90
  • Wall Orientation (outdoor): N/A
  • Access/Visibility: Publicly accessible and visible

Project Team

  • Architect: REM Architects, Inc.
  • General Contractor: Sierra Pacific General Contracting
  • Plant Selection, Installation and Maintenance: Greenleaf Interior Plant Solutions
  • System Manufacturer: LiveWall, LLC
  • System Distributor and Consultant: Florasource, Ltd.

Living Walls Have Been Shown to Improve Employee Productivity

January 5, 2016
January 5, 2016


A new study has shown that there is a link between a greener office environment and higher cognitive function.  Employees in these work environments showed better scores in crisis response and strategy development.  To learn more about the impact a greener work environment can have read the full article here.

Why are Healthcare Providers Buying Living Walls?

January 5, 2016
January 5, 2016


The aesthetic, environmental and financial benefits that green walls provide appeal to most building owners, and the social and physical health benefits of green walls make them especially attractive for healthcare patients.  New studies reinforce existing research indicating that patients exposed to views of nature heal faster.  Shorter recovery times means happier patients and potentially reduced costs as beds are freed faster for new patients.  See the article []

Study Shows Link Between Improved Student Performance and Increased Exposure to Green Space

January 5, 2016
January 5, 2016

A recent study conducted by a group of researchers has revealed a link between student’s exposure to green space and performance in standardized testing for both English and Math. The study covered a six year time period from 2006-2012 and showed that the more exposure students had to green space the better they performed on tests.

The study also revealed that during the peak of the spring growing season this affect was at its greatest. Read the study here.


Melbourne Australia Takes Proactive Approach to Green Roofs and Vertical Gardens.

July 29, 2015
July 29, 2015

The cities of Melbourne and Victoria Australia have released their Growing Green Guide, a comprehensive guide to green roofs and living walls. City officials released this guide in an effort to combat the Urban Heat Island Effect and dwindling green space within the city of Melbourne. A recent study showed that between 1988 and 2009 the amount of green space in Melbourne dropped from 20% to 13.6%. Temperatures are rising within the city as a result of this diminished green space.

The Growing Green Guide gives building owners and architects the resources they need to ensure successful applications of green roofs and vegetated walls. The guide is comprehensive, covering evidence for the benefits of green roofs and vegetated walls, technical guides for proper installation and maintenance, and case studies of applications within the city. You can download the full Growing Green Guide.

NBCU Brings LiveWall Vertical Garden to Stamford, Connecticut

July 7, 2015
July 7, 2015

The NBCU campus in Stamford, Connecticut is now home to a 980 square foot LiveWall vertical garden.  This wall crowns the top of a parking structure near the NBC Sports headquarters.  The vertical garden transforms a nondescript parking structure into an eye catching attraction.  A rear-feed irrigation configuration achieves full corner-to-corner coverage of the living wall system.

NBCU expects the LiveWall system to provide years of low maintenance vertical garden enjoyment.  LiveWall systems give plants what they need to be a healthy sustainable living wall. This means lower ongoing maintenance costs for the owner. To see other examples of vertical gardens and living wall systems visit our project showcase.

The B.O.B. and LiveWall Bring Vertical Gardening Back to Grand Rapids Urban Center

June 5, 2015
June 5, 2015

For a second consecutive year The B.O.B. in downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan will be serving their patrons the freshest possible produce by growing vegetables on-site in a LiveWall vertical garden.  Last summer, The B.O.B. transformed the living art installation ‘Back to Eden‘ into an urban vertical garden.  This garden featured a variety of vegetables, herbs, and peppers that were used to create unique dining options for visitors.

After the wall was used again for the ArtPrize entry, ‘Breathe,’ the site needed to be cleared for new construction, but the B.O.B.’s chefs were so impressed with the success of the vertical garden that they decided to keep a portion of the wall permanently.  The living wall’s new location on the sky deck next to Bobarino’s features a new mix of produce including leafy greens used in various dishes.

Keep up on the latest produce in season and living wall entrees by following The Gilmore Collection and Bobarino’s on Instagram. We have shared some of our favorite posts below:

LiveWall Vertical Garden Helps Grand Rapids Downtown Market Earn Prestigious International Award

June 4, 2015
June 4, 2015

The Grand Rapids Downtown Market has received the Good Design is Good Business Award from Architectural Record.  Each year a jury of editors selects designs from around the world.  These editors are searching for designs that best achieve the strategic objectives of rebranding, boosting productivity, and attracting customers.  They look closely at metrics such as sustainability/energy efficiency, work environment, and employee performance and productivity.  The LiveWall vertical gardens featured at The Downtown market helps maximize each of these areas.  The vertical garden is constructed of recycled components and sourced locally which helped contribute to the sustainability of the facility.  The living wall also creates a healthier work environment that boosts employee performance and productivity.  To learn more about the Downtown Market’s Good Design is Good Business award visit the Architectural Record website.

LiveWall Now Offers a Continuing Education Course for Specifiers

March 23, 2015
March 23, 2015

Planted living wall technology has evolved in recent years to include better solutions which are lower cost to maintain and more sustainable.  To help designers make informed decisions when it comes to designing living walls and vertical gardens, LiveWall has developed an online continuing education course.  The new ‘Green, Living Wall Design Considerations’ course is now available through AEC Daily.The course details design and specification considerations, outlines the benefits of living walls, and compares different system options.  After completing the course, designers will have an understanding of the plant material, lighting and system options.  They will also have a better understanding of the critical role lighting and maintenance play in the success of any living wall.  The course concludes with a collection of case studies highlighting successful indoor and outdoor green wall installations.

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The Vertical Green System that Works

Westland Real Estate Boosts Employee Morale with Indoor Vertical Garden in Long Beach, California

March 17, 2015
March 17, 2015

When designing the layout of their new Long Beach office, Westland Real Estate of Long Beach, California wanted to give their employees a comfortable working environment.  In order to achieve this goal, they installed a 480 square-foot LiveWall Indoor living wall system.  The green wall was installed to reduce the noise from the busy call-center housed within the office.  The large soil volume and healthy plants work together to naturally absorb vibrations and bring the volume down within the office.

The LiveWall Indoor system was selected because it is water-efficient and offers a drip-free solution for office applications.  This wall features a variety of indoor tropical plants that will thrive in an office environment.  See this and other California living walls in our project showcase.  Research by Alex Haslam of the university of Queensland found that an office enriched with plants makes staff happier and boosts productivity by 15%.