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March 2018

CONTENTS Excellence In Landscape Awards Project


FOCUS: iLandscape Post-show Report iLandscape Marks 5th Successful Year 10 Committees raise the bar, show meets the challenge Excellence in Landscape Awards Night 22 Fine tuning makes Awards night move smoothly


iLandscape Keynote Address 36 “Treehouse Guy� proves to be a crowd pleaser

Profile in Sustainability 42 Green Gardens goes green


Jim Martin Honored 50 Honor bestowed for commitment to education

Frank Mariani Recognized by NALP Receives Lifetime Leadership award


New Members 54 Member Profile 64 ILM

Before You Go... Make no little plans...



On the cover... ILT Vignocchi received a Gold award for Commercial Landscape Construction for this project entitled Bunker Hills Farm. The Landscape Contractor March 2018

50 3


DEPARTMENTS ILCA Calendar From Where I Stand President’s Message Classified Ads Advertisers Index


4 5 7 58 61

MARCH March 1 & 2, 2018 Foremanship Training Fox Run Golf Links Elk Grove Village, IL March 15-16, 2018 Field Staff Skills Training College of Lake County Grayslake, IL

Photo Credits ILCA Awards Program 1, 8-9, 26-34 Rick Reuland 7, 10-24, 36, 38, 40, 52 Pete Nelson 37, 39, 40 Lindy Westerfeld 42, 44, 46, 49 Scott Mahaffey 70 The official publication of the Illinois Landscape Contractors Association (ILCA), The Landscape Contractor is dedicated to educating, advising and informing members of this industry and furthering the goals of the Association. The Landscape Contractor carries news and features relating to landscape contracting, maintenance, design and allied interests. Publisher is not responsible for unsolicited material and reserves the right to edit any article or advertisement submitted for publication. Publication reserves right to refuse advertising not in keeping with goals of Association. Volume 59, Number 3. The Landscape Contractor (ISSN # 0194-7257, USPS # 476-490) is published monthly for $75.00 per year by the Illinois Landscape Contractors Association, 2625 Butterfield Road, Ste. 104S, Oak Brook, IL 60523. Periodicals postage paid at Oak Brook, IL and additional mailing offices. Printed in USA. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to The Landscape Contractor, 2625 Butterfield Road, Ste 104S, Oak Brook, IL 60523. DISPLAY ADVERTISING SALES: Association Publishing Partners, Inc., Ph. (630) 637-8632 Fax (630) 637-8629 email: CLASSIFIED ADS, CIRCULATION AND SUBSCRIPTION: ILCA (630) 472-2851 Fax (630) 472-3150 PUBLISHER/EDITORIAL OFFICE: Rick Reuland,, Naperville, IL 60540 Ph. (630)637-8632 PRODUCT DISCLAIMER: The Illinois Landscape Contractors Association, its Board of Directors, the Magazine Committee, ILCA Staff, The Landscape Contractor and its staff, neither endorse any products nor attest to the validity of any statements made about products

ILCA Staff

Magazine Staff

Executive Director Scott Grams (630) 472-2851

Rick Reuland Publisher/Advertising Sales (630) 637-8632

Education Manager AnneMarie Drufke

Debbie Rauen Advertising Sales (817-501-2403) debbie.landscapecontractor@

Events Manager Terre Houte Office Manager Alycia O’Connor Membership & Marketing Coordinator Marissa Stubler

v ILCA 2625 Butterfield Road Ste. 104S Oak Brook, IL 60523

March 16, 2018 Chicago Flower and Garden Show Pre-Show Tour Presented by the Women’s Networking Group Navy Pier Chicago, IL

APRIL April 4, 2018 Webinar Introduction to OSHA Silica Dust Law

Save the Date—

July 25-26, 2018 Pheasant Run Resort and Conference Center St. Charles, IL

v Becke Davis Senior Writer

sign up

at dotynu m to rece ive our

Patrice Peltier

Feature Writer

Meta Levin

email ne wsle t ter

Feature Writer

Nina Koziol

Shade TreeS • OrnamenTalS • evergreenS • ShrubS Feature Writer Heather Prince Feature Writer Marilyn Witney

Ryan Doty

P 630 365 9063 F 630 365 9081

45W121 Beith Road Maple Park, IL 60151


Feature Writer


The Landscape Contractor March 2018


From Where I Stand — Caffeine is the preferred drug

of the workplace. That is a short list. Most workplaces don’t allow many other drugs to cross the threshold. I have yet to hear an employer say, “Most of my employees can’t start their day until they’ve had their cups of amphetamines.” American workers ingest a lot of caffeine. Namely, we drink coffee. Coffee accounts for 75% of all the caffeine imbibed in the United States with energy drinks, energy shots, teas, and soft drinks rounding out the rest. The United States is the leading coffee drinking nation in the world based on consumption. We drink 400 million cups of coffee per day or 146 billion cups of coffee per year. Coffee is part of our culture. 52% of coffee drinkers would rather go without a shower in the morning than give up coffee. 49% of coffee drinkers would rather give up their cell phone for a month than go without the black stuff. I easily fall into those two statistics. Prior to getting my job at ILCA, I was down to one glass of herbal tea a day. Now, I easily polish off 6-7 cups of coffee per day. My staff and I have a longstanding feud over Keurig. I contend that single pod coffee makers are for people who drink coffee, not “coffee drinkers.” I am a coffee drinker. I drink black coffee, good coffee, bad coffee, old coffee, and new coffee. I will drink it out of pod, pots, urns, or an old shoe. We buy Folger’s Breakfast Blend at the office. At this point, it may just be cheaper to buy a Venezuelan coffee field so I could inspect each bean by hand. For years, we did large canisters of powdered creamer and sugar like an AA meeting in the basement of a church. Only recently, have we begun to buy flavored creamers. I am sure two years from now we will have a French press, cappuccino maker, and a bearded hipster barista 1/3 of the way through his screenplay. Coffee has nudged itself in as the primary choice of beverage for many of life’s activities. It’s versatility, pace, and warmth have made it the beverage of heartfelt conversations. It’s a landscape contractor’s pick-me-up standing next to a semifrozen hole at 7am. It powers the Starbuck’s crowds who practically live at coffee shops without paying rent. Seniors nurse free cups of decaf at McDonald’s on Sunday mornings. Teenagers wince their way through cups at Denny’s on a Saturday night as they solve all of life’s problems without the burden of life’s experiences. My wife and I hear the rumbling of our kids on a weekend morning like a Ugandan stampede. We look at each other, take one last deep breath, as I say, “I’ll make the coffee.” Coffee provides the lubrication our workplaces desperately need. The coffee break just celebrated its 115th anniversary in 2016 and we all failed to hoist a cup of java in its honor. Fewer and fewer American companies still offer a deemed break time known as a “coffee break.” Legally, employees must be given a period for lunch, but the idea that everyone stops and takes 15 minutes to sip a cup of coffee seems antiquated. Instead, companies just let their employees sip coffee throughout the day. I am surprised more desks don’t come equipped with cup holders.

I do argue that the spirit of the coffee break should live on. We do a staff meeting every Monday and we build in a social component. I know many companies do a weekly, sometimes daily meeting, but it’s important that it’s not always all work and no play. The origins of the coffee break were pure detachment from work. In these moments the mind rests and more cement and bricks are added to the social relationships most high-functioning workplaces need. The other side to coffee is the energy it gives us. I am not naive here. I know coffee isn’t just about grasping a cup with both hands in an oversized sweater on a snowy morning. There is a reason we don’t all drink apple juice to start our days. Coffee gives us an incredible jolt of energy that quickens the mind and shakes off the rust. The amount of caffeine in certain types of coffee is staggering. Not all coffee is created equal. A McDonald’s cup of coffee, although, cheap and plentiful, provides only half the caffeine as a similarly sized Starbucks’ or Dunkin Donuts’ coffee. Gourmet coffee isn’t always about free wi-fi and urban jazz. They are about getting caffeine into our bloodstreams as quickly as possible. I feel like I can lift a car after drinking a Grande Starbucks (that’s a “large” if you aren’t bilingual in pretentious Starbucks speak). It offers a whopping 330 milligrams of caffeine or almost the same amount as six cans of Mountain Dew. There are now a number of other paths if you are simply out for a quick caffeine fix. As a caffeine junkie, I’ve tried them all so you don’t have to:

I Want A New Drug

Tea Tea is like coffee’s younger brother who is into poetry and foreign films. I drink tea. I like tea, but I still have enough misguided machismo that I can’t call myself a “tea drinker.” Tea is actually a superior drink to coffee. It has hundreds of flavors and varieties. It is much cheaper. It is easier to make. One can control the caffeine by how much the drink is steeped. Tea mirrors the process of drinking coffee. It is a warm cup of something that can be sipped casually. Yet, here is where tea lets us down. It provides 1/3 the jolt of drip coffee. Where it matches coffee on the look and feel, it only provides a fraction of the punch. I love tea, I drink tea, just don’t tell my buddies, ok? Soft Drinks If tea is coffee’s nemesis, soft drinks are its arch enemy. During World War II, soft drinks were cheap, plentiful, and poured down the throats of thirsty GIs. As a result, soft drink sales spiked and coffee’s plummeted. This trend would continue until the coffee renaissance in the 1980’s that continues until today. Soft drinks fail coffee on both the process and the buzz. Drinking a pop is delicious and refreshing. It pairs well with fast food and kids adore it. The problem is that it’s terrible for you and has shockingly little caffeine compared to drip coffee. It supplements its lack of caffeine with loads of sugar that give

The Landscape Contractor March 2018


From Where I Stand — an energy buzz, but also pack on the pounds. A typical soda has about 30 MGs of caffeine where a cup of coffee has about 125. Most people addicted to soft drinks are actually drawn more to the sugar than the caffeine and eventually find themselves trying to fit a 96oz Big Gulp into their car cup holders wondering where their lives went wrong. Energy Drinks If we are using familial metaphors, energy drinks are soft drinks’ burnout older brother who listens to speed metal, smokes cigarettes, and drives a Trans-Am. Energy drinks are no joke. Years from now I wonder if our grandkids will be like, “Can you believe Taurine used to be legal?” like how our great grandparents used to buy heroin as “exhaustion pills.” Energy drinks are a fancy way of saying caffeine and sugar with vitamins! They claim to have a variety of amino acids, vitamins, and herbs, but the stars of the show are still caffeine and sugar. A typical Monster Energy Drink has 13.5 teaspoons of sugar and still only half the caffeine of a medium Starbucks.



Energy shots These little babies are all killer and no filler. An energy shot is an energy drink distilled down to its essence. They are sold in 2-oz vials often close to the cash register at most convenient stores. 5-hour Energy is the most popular energy shot brand selling over $220 million dollars of product in 2017. 5-hour Energy has 215 MGs of caffeine or twice that of drip coffee while only having 4 calories. The most potent caffeineladen drink on the market, in all forms, is the 10-hour Energy shot weighing in at 422 MGs of caffeine in a 2oz bottle. The website lists the shot as, “dangerous.” In full disclosure, I love 5-hour Energy. It provides mental clarity and sharpness and helps me avoid the caffeine jitters I get from coffee. What 5-hour Energy lacks is any social component. People buy 5-hour Energy like they buy cigarettes or an adult magazine. It is something whispered and put into a pocket immediately. It is downed quickly and in private. I swear by the stuff, but would feel weird pouring it into my coffee mug at an ILCA committee meeting. Coffee and caffeine are as ingrained in the American workplace as timesheets and pens. I have never heard of an American company banning this pick-me-up. In fact, most employers even use company funds to keep the coffee pot full. No matter the day we are having, coffee gives us those little moments where everything seems in control and manageable. It allows us to take pause, reward ourselves, or build up our resolves before diving into the next project. For those who choose not to drink coffee, I admire your discipline and tee totaling. For my brothers and sisters who do drink coffee, those other people are nuts! For we know that coffee is the food pellet that serves as our reward for a job well done. To paraphrase a line from the unofficial coffee sponsor of the ILCA; sometimes the best part of waking up is coffee in your cup.

Scott Grams February 20, 2018


The Landscape Contractor March 2018

President’s Message — “Unity is strength… when there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved.” – Mattie Stepanek


Lisa Fiore Don Fiore Company, Inc. (847) 234-0020

No greater thing can be said when appreciating the power of collabora-


Tom Lupfer Lupfer Landscaping (708) 352-2765


Jose Garcia Natural Creations Landscaping, Inc. (815) 724-0991

Immediate Past President

Mike Schmechtig Schmechtig Landscape Company (847) 566-1233


Mark Breier National Seed Co. (630) 963-8787 Allan Jeziorski Hartman Landscape (708) 403-8433

Kevin Manning K & D Enterprise Landscape Management, Inc. (815) 725-0758 Scott McAdam, Jr. McAdam Landscaping, Inc. (708) 771-2299 Dean MacMorris Night Light, Inc. (630) 627-1111 Ashley Voss Vermeer Midwest (630) 820-3030

Mark Utendorf Emerald Lawn Care, Inc. (847) 392-7097 Donna Vignocchi Zych ILT Vignocchi, Inc. (847) 487-5200

tion. Last week, I was again honored to be among an incredible group of people at our 2018 iLandscape show. It was such a great time to see old friends, make new friends, catch up with suppliers, view new products and be enlightened with excellent educational sessions and speakers. That being said, we owe it to a great collaboration of committees and staff who work so hard behind the scenes to put it all together. Every year they take compliments, criticisms and general suggestions into their plan for the next show and time and again, they never disappoint. Whether it be the Experience Committee with their amazing layout changes to keep things fresh, the Education Committee bringing in Pete Nelson to Elevate us higher than we have been before, the Membership Committee with giant a jenga to show the fun side of ILCA, the Awards Committee bringing change and innovation to the night, the Latino Committee creating education for this growing segment, the FLIP Committee for organizing our first Career Fair in four years, or our ever devoted staff running the show floor day in and day out, all of this teamwork definitely has achieved wonderful things. I just wanted to say thank you for your time, talents and tenacity to keep this show an event “not to be missed”! At the awards ceremony, I had the honor to introduce Bruce Church as this year’s person of the year. In his acceptance speech he mentioned how he would be no where without the help of his team. This resonated with me as I thought about my team at Don Fiore Company, my team at ILCA and my team of loved ones, and realized I would be nowhere without any of them either. Thanks to Bruce for the reminder that we are only who we are because of those who walk with us along our path, pick us up when we fall and who high five us when we succeed. Speaking of my team at ILCA, I am so fortunate to work with such a great board. They are a group of educated, hard-working, inspiring people, who know how to get things done. They also know how to have a little fun as well, which I highly appreciate. The 12 of us will be meeting in late February for two days to delve into strategic planning to keep moving along with our three year plan and setting goals on how to achieve it. I look forward to updating you on our progress in my April message. Since I am writing this message in February with nearly 6” of snow on the ground and you are reading it in March with high hopes of spring returning I will end on this note…

“No winter lasts forever; no spring skips its turn.” — Hal Borland Thank you, Lisa Fiore February 15, 2018 The Landscape Contractor March 2018


Nature’s Perspective Landscaping • Historic Lakefront Estate Evanston

Our clients own

a lakefront home, built in 1910, located in the Evanston Lakeshore Historic District. They shared an asphalt driveway with their neighbors, who reside in a newer construction home built in 2005, situated closer to the lake. The shared driveway was narrow, which caused traffic issues when homeowners were coming home or leaving at the same time, and it caused issues with vehicles hitting the retaining walls. Several years passed and it was time to replace the driveway. Our clients requested a wider driveway constructed out of clay pavers with decorative accents, lighting, improved drainage and curbing. All designs have constraints; in this case, a major constraint was straightening the driveway to reduce headlights on the house while maintaining the integrity of the existing trees, shrubs, and retaining walls. During the course of construction, we changed the grade of the driveway to prevent cars from scraping the driveway as they pull into the lower level garage. Downspouts were re-directed underground to a drain tile system to eliminate pooling of rainwater on

the driveway surface. These upgrades greatly improved the driveway’s function. The Whitacre Greer paved driveway spreads over 8,000 square feet. The herringbone pattern is balanced with inlays to replicate an original rectangle inlay at the front stoop. Elegant barbed quatrefoil inlays and their inverse are constructed of Brussels Block, offering visual interest to the large driveway. The round, Haddenstone fountain was completed in 2016 and added the finishing touches to the front yard. It was designed for the homeowner’s wife and ties in the traditional aspects of the home. It is aligned with the front entrance of the home. Laser-cut Valders Stone slabs encircle the fountain, leading to a bench set against a rose garden and arborvitae hedge. Four pillars were constructed of Belgard Homestead clay pavers and Limestone coping to flank the two paved entrances. They are topped with ornate lanterns to match the style of the home’s existing fixtures

The Landscape Contractor March 2018


iLandscape 2018 —



The keeps illinois +getting wisconsinbigger Landscape Show just & better By Rick Reuland

Elevate proved

an appropriate theme for the 5th annual iLandscape event. The ILCA Experience and Education Committees collaborated to provide a seamless mix of top end education with a first class trade show, all bound together with a liberal dose of fun. As usual, the event ran three days. But for the first time, the opening day fell in January — January 31 - February 2, 2018. Again this year, iLandscape attendance topped the 6,000 mark landing at an just over 6,200 total. The “Elevate” theme seemed to set the tone for both expectation and delivery. Attendees and exhibitors all praised the size and diversity of the iLandscape offerings. “In 2018 a show can’t simply rest on its success. The Experience and Education Committees have to strive to re-invent the show every year,” says Dave Warning Co-Chair of the Experience Committee. If you were at iLandscape, you just might see yourself in the following pages. If you somehow missed iLandscape, this is the time to mark your calendar for next year — January 30 - February 1, 2019. We’ll look for you there. I’ll be the one with the camera.


The Landscape Contractor March 2018

The Landscape Contractor March 2018


iLandscape 2018 —

Day 1 on the Garden Stage... Keynote Pete Nelson “The Treehouse Guy”


The Landscape Contractor March 2018

Marquee speakers drove day 2...

Tracy Disabato-Aust

Piet Oudolf

Pete Nelson The Landscape Contractor March 2018


iLandscape 2018 —

Educational classes to fit any need ...

from bulbs to business


The Landscape Contractor March 2018




Traditional Box 24 x 24, LS 9535, and Glencoe 24 Planter, LS 9308, on Fluted Column with Cap, LS 9674, in the Greenhouse at Longshadow Gardens

iLandscape 2018 —

Students were the highlight on Friday...

Jim Martin, Chair of the Future Landscape Industry Professionals (FLIP) Committee.

Student Roundtables

Career Fair and an active job board


The Landscape Contractor March 2018

When is Hardwood Bark Mulch the Best Choice? From Interview with Kevin Donnelly, Horticultural Soil Scientist at Midwest Trading, Maple Park, IL

At Midwest Trading their Premium Hardwood Bark Mulch is the industry leader in mulch products. Kevin Donnelly, Midwest Trading's Horticultural Soil Scientist, stated they are very proud of the remarkably high quality standards used to provide the best product to landscape professionals. "Many local suppliers rely on wood waste that is 90% white wood, whereas Midwest Trading's Premium Hardwood Bark Mulch is composed of a minimum of 90% pure bark. That's the difference that makes our product so revered," stated Donnelly. "Additionally, our mulch has a higher quality of weed reduction, color, moisture retention, and labor savings." Midwest Trading's Premium Hardwood Bark Mulch contains no wood waste, is a clean blend of hard wood bark. The product is debarked, tub ground and textured to create the ideal product. With an even layer of spread mulch, you can reduce water loss, and keep an even soli temperature. In a recent interview, Donnelly, said, "When a landscape contractor wants to make sure plantings are well protected, Premium Hardwood Bark Mulch is going to be the best product on the market," citing the fact that Midwest Trading's mulch is made with high-quality shredded bark, which locks together, to stop soil erosion and breaks down to provide the best nutrient value for the soil itself. Additionally, this mulch holds its color longer, providing the long lasting, high quality appeal homeowners and industry professionals alike both desire and require. "The biggest reason professionals like our mulch? Reduced weed pressure, this mulch holds back weeds phenomenally," Kevin said, "and that saves labor costs. Landscapers love that part." The Landscape Contractor March 2018


iLandscape 2018 —

Never a dull moment at iLandscape ...


The Landscape Contractor March 2018

the fun never stops

The Landscape Contractor March 2018


iLandscape 2018 —


The Landscape Contractor March 2018

The Landscape Contractor March 2018


Excellence In Landscape Person of the Year

Bruce Church

Bruce Church of Balanced Environments was honored as the ILCA Person of the Year, presented by ILCA President Lisa Fiore.


The Landscape Contractor March 2018

Awards Night 2018 Distinguished Service Award McGinty Brothers

President Lisa Fiore presents the Distinguished Service Award to Brian McGinty of McGinty Bros.

The Landscape Contractor March 2018


Excellence In Landscape Judges’ Award

Professionals’ Choice

Rosborough Partners


Bret-Mar Landscapearming Site

Scholarships Student Design


The Landscape Contractor March 2018

Excellence In Landscape

Black Creek Canyon, Inc. Residential Construction Odyssey

Christy Webber Landscapes Special Event The 811 Bungalow Garden

Black Creek Canyon, Inc. Residential Construction Playground Paradise

Christy Webber Landscapes Commercial Construction Soldier Field Memorial Planter Promenade

Bret-Mar Landscape Residential Construction Harmonious Integration 26

Christy Webber Landscapes Commercial Maintenance Hubbard Place The Landscape Contractor March 2018

Gold Awards 2017

Christy Webber Landscapes Residential Construction Arnold Residence

Grant and Power Landscaping Residential Construction Farrar Residence

Christy Webber Landscapes Commercial Construction Navy Pier Centennial Vision

Green View Landscaping Residential Construction Mikula Tuscan Villa

Christy Webber Landscapes Commercial Maintenance Westfield Old Orchard

James Martin Associates Residential Construction Lake House Promenade The Landscape Contractor March 2018


Excellence In Landscape

Nature’s Perspective Landscaping Residential Construction Historic Lakefront Estate

Scott Byron & Company Residential Construction Highland Park Haven

Rosborough Partners, Inc. Commercial Construction A Rose By Any Other Name

Scott Byron & Company Residential Construction Residence with a View

Rosborough Partners, Inc. Residential Maintenance Spiral Garden 28

Scott Byron & Company Residential Maintenance Bluff Property The Landscape Contractor March 2018

Gold Awards 2017

The Pizzo Group Ecological Planting Graceland Cemetery

Awards Sponsors Cassidy Tire & Repair Producer Sponsor

Fiore Nursery and Landscape Supply Gold Award Sponsor

The Davey Tree Expert Co./TCOT, A Davey Co. Champagne Sponsor

Illinois Brick Supply Gold Award Sponsor

Peerless Fence Coffee Sponsor

National Seed Gold Award Sponsor

Midwest Groundcovers + Midwest Trading Director Sponsor

ILASLA Gold Award Sponsor

Greenius Dessert Table Sponsor

Lightscape, Inc. Gold Award Sponsor

Bartlett Tree Experts Red Carpet and Cocktail Sponsor

Night Light Gold Award Sponsor Rental Max Gold Award Sponsor

Russo Power Equipment Gold Award Sponsor

The Landscape Contractor March 2018


Excellence In Landscape

Architectural Gardens, Inc. Residential Construction Making an Entrance

Green View Companies Residential Construction Vala

Black Creek Canyon, Inc. Residential Construction Waterfall Wonderland

Landscape Concepts Management Commercial Maintenance Burr Ridge Village Center

Nature’s Perspective Landscaping Christy Webber Landscapes Residential Construction Commercial Maintenance A Georgian Garden Revival Carl Sandburg Village Homeowners Association 30 The Landscape Contractor March 2018

Silver Awards 2017

Night Light, Inc. Specialty Element A Sunset Serenity

The Pizzo Group Ecological Planting HUB Group Headquarters

Rosborough Partners, Inc. Commercial Construction Georgian Townhomes

The Pizzo Group Ecological Planting Radio Flyer Headquarters

Scott Byron & Co . Residential Maintenance West Milwaukee Property

The Pizzo Group Ecological Planting UI Labs The Landscape Contractor March 2018


Excellence In Landscape

Countryside Flower Shop & Nursery Specialty Element Italian Waterfall

Milieu Landscaping Residential Construction Family Poolside Escape

Dutch Barn Landscaping Residential Construction Transformation

Superior Landscaping, Inc. Residential Construction Krupka Residence

LKM Mowing and Landscaping Residential Construction Lowe Residence 32

The Pizzo Group Ecological Planting Stillwater HOA - Book Road Pond The Landscape Contractor March 2018

Merit Awards 2017

The Pizzo Group Ecological Planting Oaks of Vernon Hills

The Pizzo Group Ecological Planting Augusta Village Homeowners Association

The Pizzo Group Ecological Planting Russell Residence - Lakeside, Michigan

The Pizzo Group Ecological Planting Lakewood Falls Retention Basins

The Landscape Contractor March 2018


Honorable Mention 2017

A.M. Woodland Outdoor Design Residential Construction Lake Front Landscape Redesign

Dutch Barn Landscaping Specialty Element Vista Falls

Dig Right In Landscaping, Inc. Residential Construction Sustainable Yard for a Family to Grow

Night Light, Inc. Specialty Element An Enlightened Enclave

QUALITY ORGANIC FERTILIZERS FOR ALL YOUR LANDSCAPE NEEDS Nature Safe offers an organic granular fertilizer made from animal proteins. These nutrients feed the roots of the plant, thus building a stronger and deeper rooted plant producing a healthier lawn. A healthier lawn requires fewer applications of fertilizer and can reduce the need to water. Excellent results when used for grow-ins, sod installation, trees, shrubs, flower beds, and vegetable gardens. · · · · ·

More OMRI listed products than any other organic manufacture in the industry Use on properties to help obtain needed LEED points Conforms with the U.S. Biopreferred program Extensive product line that provides options for almost any agronomic challenge Used on many botanical gardens, professional sports fields and by landscape companies across the country


The Natural Choice for Soil and Plant Nutrition


The Landscape Contractor March 2018

iLandscape 2018 —

Up, Up and Away! Animal Planet’s Treehouse Guy Pete Nelson Inspires iLandscape Attendees Nina A. Koziol

When Pete Nelson was 5

years old, his dad built a tree fort behind their garage in Ridgewood, NJ. That experience and a love of the outdoors played a role in directing his career. “We all know how truly beautiful nature is and walking through the woods as a child was just magic,” Nelson said. The host of Animal Planet’s popular television show, Treehouse Masters, Nelson was the inspiring keynote speaker at the 2018 iLandscape show. His exquisite treehouses grace properties in Texas, Alaska, Washington, Wisconsin, Oregon and on the East coast. He runs Nelson Treehouse and Supply and Treehouse Point, a treehouse Bed & Breakfast located outside of Seattle. His career path has had some bumps and success came later in life. Nelson was 25 when he moved to Colorado Springs in 1987. His dream of a career creating treehouses was rekindled when a high-school friend sent him the book, “How to Build Treehouses, Huts and Forts” by David Stiles. That inspired him to build a treehouse in a large cottonwood behind his house. It had an enormous (and quite heavy) brick fireplace as part of the structure. “We eventually moved to Seattle and that treehouse came down at 2 in the morning and thankfully no one was hurt.” That was the beginning of his treehouse adventures as an adult. An economics major in college, Nelson went to a bank so he could develop a business plan as a house builder. He had three kids and needed a regular income. “I put a lot of roadblocks in front of my dream of being a treehouse builder. A lack of trees, for one,” he said with a chuckle. So, when he wasn’t building homes, he began building playhouses for his children. “At 30, I was still obsessed with the treehouse fantasy. I wanted to find like-minded adults—who 36

were essentially grown up children—to work with.” He began looking for examples of treehouses for adults and in 1992 decided to do a coffee-table book filled with stunning examples. The book, Treehouses: The Art and Craft of Living Out on a Limb, was released in 1994 and the New York Times featured it in a big spread. He made a giant treehouse that became his office. “By 1996, I knew I wanted to focus on building treehouses. At the same time I was building real houses and it was really stressful. I was wondering if I was going to go under at any moment.” His first treehouse client came in 1999 in Oregon. “They found us through our first web page and it was the first profitable job.” The following year, he did his first treehouse out of state—in Massachusetts. “I continued to build my ground houses and was barely staying afloat,” he admitted. “I knew if I could make this a viable business, it would be the greatest thing in the world.” The entire experience of building houses up in the air was trial and error. He used TABs (treehouse attachment bolts) that were drilled into the tree trunks. “It was a learning curve. The house we built in 2000 began to push out the platform and the boss.” He had to extend the metal rod and lift the beam. He discovered two key factors that affected his treehouses. “Trees grow and get greater in girth and grow out at the tips. The tree gets fatter but the treehouse doesn’t move up.” Tree bark was growing over some of his

The Landscape Contractor March 2018

platforms. And trees move in the wind. “It’s ok to anchor to one tree statically. We use cables to allow trees to move. They must be able to move or they’re going to ‘worry’ that treehouse until something breaks.” Douglas fir and western red cedar are two of his favorite woods. “Western red cedar makes a whale-like song as the bolt goes in, which is good. You don’t want any air in there.” When the economy took a nosedive in 2008, he focused on his treehouse bed-and-breakfast/spa idea. “Permitting was a problem and we had a stop work order. Begging forgiveness rather than asking for permission is not the way to do it. By 2011, when they came back, the building inspectors wanted a set back from the river. I expect them to give me my permits soon— it’s only been 12 years.” In an ironic twist, when he was doing a treehouse in Omaha, Nebraska, the city not only gave him a permit, but asked if they could give him a parade. When Animal Planet approached him in 2013, the business had been doing a slow simmer. “It’s been nonstop since then,” Nelson said. “If you’re ever approached by a reality show, go for it.” His daughter Emily left her job with an outdoor equipment firm to work with Nelson. His two other adult children have since joined the business as well. The show averages about 1.3 million viewers per episode. “It’s been so much fun. Emily thinks a lot like I do but she runs the team. It’s a family business and that can be tough. There’s a lot of emotion, but it can also be a lot of fun.” His clients have become friends. “People interested in the outdoors are good people. They’re dreamers who do things and they’re obviously successful.” (continued on page 40) The Landscape Contractor March 2018


iLandscape 2018 — “I’m a broad stroke kinda guy. As you look at the trees, interpret the layout of what you can build in them, but I feel like I’m preaching to the choir.”
















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The Landscape Contractor March 2018

The Landscape Contractor March 2018


iLandscape 2018 — (continued from page 37) Nelson regularly works with an architect and engineers. “One project in Oregon had wind loads of 130 mph so we use engineers to do the calculations.” For an expansive treehouse in Alaska, he didn’t rely on trees for support. The house sits nestled in a canopy of conifers but is supported by discretely placed steel posts and beams. “I’m a broad stroke kinda guy. As you look at the trees, interpret the layout of what you can build in them, but I feel like I’m preaching to the choir,” Nelson said. “I have great respect for all of you landscapers who keep plants alive.” In 2016, Nelson collaborated with country music star Zac Brown to build a 1,300 square foot treehouse at Brown’s Camp Southern Ground, a non-profit designed to serve children with neuro-developmental disorders as well as children from military families struggling with PTSD. He attends the World Treehouse Conference in Oregon every fall. The author of six books on treehouses, Nelson is introspective about his success. He shared with attendees this quote from Mother Teresa: “We can do no great things, just small things with great love.” His latest book is “Pete Nelson’s Be in a Treehouse: Design, Construction, Inspiration.” Going forward, Nelson said, “We can do things with integrity and love and that’s what I want to do.” See more of his projects, the hardware and books here: https://www.


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The Landscape Contractor March 2018



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Profiles in Sustainability —

Green Gardens Goes Green, One Step at a Time By Marilyn Witney

Were you at ILCA’s new Impact Conference about sustainable landscaping in October? More than 200 attendees were there, including Lindy Westerfeld, owner of Green Gardens Landscape and Installation. Westerfeld has been attending these type of conferences for the past 15 years. Conferences, along with the people she met there, were the beginnings of adding profitable sustainable services to Green Gardens. Today, her small, one-woman Mount Prospect business has grown every year since 2009, serving Chicago’s northwest suburbs.


Lindy Westerfeld

Corporate Finance to Green Industry Westerfeld spent almost 20 years in the world of finance, ending up as Vice President of Technology for a large securities company. But after five buyouts, reorganizations and staff layoffs, she was ready for a change. She learned gardening by the side of both her mother and grandfather, and often found solace strolling garden centers and nurseries. In 2001, she signed up for horticulture classes at Triton College and was introduced to Midwest Ecological Landscape Alliance (MELA) at the annual winter conference MELA held there.

The Landscape Contractor March 2018

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She earned an Associates in Horticulture from Triton in 2004, and stepped into a landscape design career working for various traditional landscaping companies, both big and small. While there, she also learned estimating, maintenance management and construction, and did a few of her own designs for customers on the side. After eight years, Westerfeld combined her corporate savvy with her landscaping experience and opened her own shop in 2009 … Green Gardens Landscape and Installation. Learning the Ropes in Sustainable Landscaping Originally, Green Gardens offered only traditional design and maintenance services, because that’s what Westerfeld learned while at Triton and at her previous employers. Even so, she knew she wanted to add sustainability to her practice. A Chicago conference entitled “Sustainovate” caught her eye, and she contacted Triton classmate Carol Becker who now was the Executive Director for MELA. She attended Sustainovate in 2009 on MELA’s behalf, and kept right on going to learn more and more about “how to” with sustainable services and a company mission to “partner with customers to create landscapes in harmony with their needs, their budget and with nature.” Learning more and more at MELA conferences, seminars and workshops, and networking with like-minded professionals, got the ball rolling for Green Gardens. Westerfeld met Mark Moxley of Lake Street Supply who had hands-on experience with sustainable materials and products; leaders at Aquascape who were the experts in water management; and further built her friendship with Carol Becker who, along with MELA leadership, has her own sustainable design company. In an interview, Becker commented, “Lindy thought deeply about how to apply principals of sustainability to her business. She is willing to make the effort to learn sustainable practices and applies it carefully in the right situations. Her company grew because of that.” Resources that Westerfeld learned about from MELA members and presentations led to her own reading and research so that she could add sustainable landscape maintenance practices to her services. She uses what she learned to build soil organisms, keep water on customers’ properties and put the right plants in the right place for lower inputs and less maintenance. She does not employ (continued on page 44)


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The Landscape Contractor March 2018


Profiles in Sustainability — (continued from page 43) crews of her own, so she taught both her subcontractors and her customers about sustainable practices like mowing high, leaving clippings, recycling yard waste and weeding versus spraying. When customers request completely organic lawn care service, she subcontracts to companies like Logic Lawn Care, who she met through MELA and which supplies this practice. In addition, she reuses planting materials when possible and preserves existing landscapes and views when appropriate, recycles gravel, boulders and other materials and promotes the use of native plants and mindful chemical application whenever possible. Growing with Sustainable Landscaping Tools As her business grew, Westerfeld noticed that her younger customers were requesting more organic or natural landscapes. They wanted butterfly gardens, pollinators for their vegetable patch and organic treatment for their lawns. So as her own knowledge grew, Westerfeld decided to employ more complex sustainable services. Stormwater management interested her and had become a burgeoning problem in Mount Prospect where her business is based, along with other suburbs in her service area. So she jumped in to find out more about it. Westerfeld ventured into new territory with the help of a website she learned about at an ILCA MidAm presentation. “I heard about a rain garden website from a presentation by Aquascapes in 2011. Called Raingarden Network, it gave me a step by step tutorial for how to install a rain garden.”


Westerfeld’s first challenge in 2011, was a drainage issue along a cedar fence line in Arlington Heights, where ten inches of water from the neighbor’s downspouts and sump pump caused rotting and mold, and a muddy mess for the owner’s two large dogs. During construction a rain garden was positioned along the fence line to capture the water from the neighbor’s yard. The reuse, division and repositioning of the customer’s existing miscanthus grasses, boulders and hydrangea help hide the drainage area, along with the addition of native and non-native plants that prefer wet areas like Sweet Spire shrub, Caesar’s Brother Japanese iris, carex and helenium shown in the photo. Together, the components of this gorgeous garden work to create a drainage area designed to absorb the neighbor’s water discharge, encouraging it to percolate through the layers of gravel and soil under the plantings and into the water table below. “What is so wonderful about learning sustainable practices is that the experts I’ve met are so completely willing to share and help you along the way,” Westerfeld confided. For example, since she was new to rain garden installs, she was unsure of the depth required. Her colleague Carol Becker had more experience, and offered to drop by and help make the determination with her. Becker’s expertise helped assure the success of this first project, and gave Green Gardens an additional service that has helped attract customers and build the business. (continued on page 46)

The Landscape Contractor March 2018

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The Landscape Contractor

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Profiles in Sustainability — (continued from page 44) Connecting Customers to their Landscapes These days, Westerfeld markets her company specifically for stormwater management and sustainable practices. Both her advertising and her website detail the installation of rain gardens, sustainable landscapes, building the soil and using native plants to attract butterflies, bees and other pollinators. “My goal is to create a healthy outdoor space that’s not just a pretty space, but that really connects my customers to their landscapes,” Westerfeld says. One such client is a young Park Ridge homeowner who purchased a large, 3,000 square foot home built by the previous owner after tearing down the modest mid-century ranch originally on the lot. The new house boasted a large concrete patio, a concrete, 2-car driveway and a two and one-half car garage, along with a footprint much larger than the original home. When the new house was built, despite the large amount of additional impervious area, the only new stormwater management required by the village was a storm drain with a backflow preventor connected to the municipal sewer system. Page Four/Green Gardens Two weeks after the young family moved in, a rain event created a 1,000 square foot “pond” covering the entire back of the property. The water remained for days on end after each rainfall, and the soil almost never dried out, making the back yard totally unusable to the couple’s two little girls and two dogs.


Combining Traditional with Sustainable The homeowner reached out to the village for help, but received none. So they contacted Green Gardens on a referral from one of Westerfeld’s long-time maintenance customers. By this time in 2014, she could rely on both her experience with traditional stormwater management, and her recent experience with now a handful of rain gardens to solve the problems. Examination of the property revealed various major stormwater challenges: the storm drain was not adequate for the amount of impervious space now on the lot; houses on each side of the home were not equipped with gutters or downspouts, collecting pools of water on their own properties and elsewhere; and the customer’s property was the lowest on the block, so water gushed downhill to fill their back yard. Westerfeld’s solution entailed multiple components, all with the intent to keep water on the property and to assure that runoff stopped short of the storm drain. Drain tiles were installed extending downspouts from the large garage and directed any runoff toward a rain garden in the back yard. Dogwood shrubs that thrive in wet soil were planted around the perimeter of the yard to absorb additional water, while creating a flourishing border. Native plants whose deep root systems encourage even more absorption of water were added to create a pollinator garden (continued on page 48)

The Landscape Contractor March 2018

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Profiles in Sustainability — (continued from page 46) for the home’s young mother and children. Homeowner Nicole Grelecki reported that, “A thunderstorm came through the area that night, right after Lindy and her crew finished. When I woke up the next morning, not a drop had pooled in the yard. She had created the exact vision I’d always had for a beautiful garden.” Westerfeld was called back the next year to design and install a front landscape that consisted of serviceberry, sweet spire, baptisia, helenium and carex. In the process, another challenge was uncovered which had caused a virtual “dead zone” right in front of the home. Green Gardens crew found the original driveway buried in the front yard, never removed during the teardown. They excavated ten tons of compacted gravel, by hand with picks, in order to preserve the existing landscape and keep the process quiet during the naps of the owner’s small children. Homeowner

Grelecki continued, “What was really outstanding about Lindy was her flexibility and attention to detail. She was hands-on with the crew and taught me about the plants, and how to maintain and prune them myself with a hand tool. Now I don’t need fancy equipment or a crew to help me … I can do it all myself. Plus, all the pollinators we now get created a bumper crop of tomatoes and peppers in my children’s vegetable garden!” A Model for Small Contractors For the future, Westerfeld expects to add more sustainable practices to her services as the market gets bigger and more customers ask for them. She wants to keep re-focusing her business to keep up with changes in the industry and in ecological advancements. Giving back and helping preserve the environment are also important to her.

In an interview, ILCA Executive Director Scott Grams commented on Westerfeld’s accomplishments by saying, “Many of our members have turned the corner on understanding that sustainability is important. But they haven’t figured out ‘how’ to do it. Lindy is an excellent example of a small contractor who’s unafraid to try something new. She did her own research and reached out to the experts and didn’t turn her back. She’s gaining welldeserved positive results now that she’s ahead of the pack.” Learn more about sustainable landscaping, including a “how to” for rain gardens, by visiting the ILCA website under “Resources.” And watch for details of webinars and seminars on sustainable landscaping practices throughout the year ahead, planned by the Sustainable and Ecological Landscape Committee.

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The Landscape Contractor March 2018

The Landscape Contractor March 2018


Members in the News —

IGIA’s 2018 GIPAC Dinner Honoree

Jim Martin

It’s no surprise

that this year’s honoree, Jim Martin of James Martin Associates, places such emphasis on mentorship and education. For Jim, the University of Illinois has played a major role in his life and his involvement continues today. After being a University of Illinois Scholarship recipient for all four of his years at U of I, Jim graduated with honors in 1972. Jim has been an Annual Fund Contributor to the Department of Landscape Architecture for 30 years. In 1992, Jim became a member of the President’s Council of the University of Illinois Foundation. Jim also served as a visiting professor during 1987. Upon Terence Harkness’s retirement, Jim created the Terrence Harkness Lecture Endowment Fund for the Department of Landscape Architecture. 50

So, with education being such an important part of his life, it only makes sense that mentorship, education and the support of young people entering the industry have always been high priorities for Jim. Whether from Jim personally or with JMA’s support, industry scholarships and JMA’s internship and management training programs continue to leave an indelible mark on the future of our industry. For more than 30 years, James Martin Associates has trained and mentored more than 120 young industry professionals through its internship and management trainee programs. With this year’s announcement of the JMA Family-Member Scholarship, 30 Scholarships will have been awarded during JMA’s 40-year history. This commitment to awarding scholarships led Jim to be the first White Oak Contributor to ILCA’s The Landscape Contractor March 2018

ILCECO Scholarship fund. His contributions to education are impressive, and they may be a far greater reward than the myriad industry awards and accolades that Jim and JMA have garnered over the years. Whether it’s because of everyone he has touched or his emphasis on training and continuing education or the investments he’s made to industry instruction or his commitment to safety, JMA is one of the most recognized and awarded companies in the United States. Of all of these accomplishments, Jim says he is most proud of the 21 associate stockholders he proudly refers to as his partners. However, he reserves his greatest praise, admiration and appreciation for his own family which includes his wife Linda, his three daughters, and four healthy, creative grandchildren.


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Members in the News —

Frank Mariani Receives NALP Lifetime Leadership Award The National

Association of Landscape Professionals presented its Lifetime Leadership Award to Frank Mariani, CEO of Mariani Landscape, Lake Bluff, at its executive-level conference, Leaders Forum, in Punta Cana, Mexico, on January 26, 2018. Mariani currently serves on NALP’s Board of Directors and the Board of Directors of its Foundation. He is a mentor to many in the industry, serving as an NALP Trailblazer and co-hosting the NALP Field Trip with Frank and Marty. Frank is the second generation to run the family-owned Mariani Landscape, building it into an award-winning powerhouse, servicing some of the most prestigious properties in the Chicago area. Mariani Landscape is the first landscape company to be approved to the ISO 9001 Quality Standard. This involves an implementation of a specific Quality Management System for all areas of the business including facilities, people, training, services and equipment. “Frank has served the industry with great energy and passion; mentoring younger professionals and working to build the industry through the Industry Growth Initiative.” said Sabeena Hickman, CAE, CEO of NALP. “We are proud to honor Frank with this award and to share his story.” The Lifetime Leadership Award is presented annually to a member of the association who has demonstrated leadership, service, and commitment to both NALP and the landscape industry. It honors individuals who have improved the landscape industry and inspired others.


The awards were presented at the Breakfast for Business Success sponsored by GIE+EXPO. For information about the NALP awards program, visit In addition to his national service, Frank Mariani has also served ILCA as: President from 1991-92; ILCA Man of the Year honoree 1994. Frank as well as many of his employees have served ILCA on a wide variety of committees, educational presentations, and general volunteer effforts throughout the years. Mariani Landscape has been an ILCA Member firm since 1975. Congratulations Frank, you truly continue to be a leader in the landscape industry.

The Landscape Contractor March 2018

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The Landscape Contractor March 2018


New Members — CONTRACTORS Andy’s Professional Landscaping Laura McNames 4035 S. Perryville Road Cherry Valley, IL 61016 Email: Phone: 815-332-3305 Website: Aqua Designs Inc Brian P McCartan 2133 Gould Ct. Rockdale, IL 60436 Email: Phone: 815-725-2460 Website:

Elite Hardscape Solutions, Inc. Charles A Fowler 1561 Galway Dr. Aurora, IL 60505 Email: Phone: 630-957-8524 Estate Lighting, Inc. Tim Tacheny 10305 Covell Street Richmond, IL 60071 Email: Phone: 847-612-1705 Website: Evergreen Irrigation Ray Eissens 126 N. Madison St. Rockford, IL 61107 Email: Phone: 815-965-5203 Website:

BJ’s Lawn Service, inc Joseph Balthazor P.O. Box 1904 Palatine, IL 60078 Email: Phone: 847-776-2400 Website:

E-Z Care Service John Enzinger 3317 W. Forest Rd. Freeport, IL 61032 Email: Phone: 815-275-1749 Website: Flora Lawn Care & Landscaping Inc. Wiktor Kolanko 176 Forest Avenue Lake Zurich, IL 60047 Email: Phone: 224-334-0986 Website: G.B. Sprinkler Systems, Inc. Bill Gilgenbach PO Box 719 Glenview, IL 60025 Email: Phone: 847-824-3999 Website:

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Gardens In Progress Nikoll Taylor 42 Sherwood Terrace #7 Lake Bluff, IL 60044 Email: Phone: 847-295-11911 Website: Gary’s Finer Landscapes Gary Fidanzia P.O.Box 31076 Chicago, IL 60651 Email: Phone: 312-907-7945 Gracewell Services, Inc. Mark Neville 39W349 W Haladay Lane Geneva, IL 60134 Email: Phone: 630-406-9496 Website:

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New Members — Greenscape, Inc. Mike Baines 335 North Avenue Batavia, IL 60510 Email: Phone: 630-346-0680 Website:

Landcraft Design LLC Jim Davis 2122 Fulham Drive Naperville, IL 60564 Email: Phone: 630-453-2863 Website:

Hembrough Tree and Lawn Care Steve Hembrough 2148 E State St. Jacksonville, IL 62650 Email: Phone: 217-245-6227 Website:

Landscape Unlimited Tim 10546 N 2nd St. Machesney Park, IL 61115 Email: Phone: 815-633-5436 Website:

JR’s Landscape Services Installation and Maintenance, Inc. John Rogers 5747 Queenwood Rd. Groveland, IL 61535 Email: Phone: 309-202-6806 Website:

Larry’s Lawn Care and Design LLC Larry Leonard PO Box 532 Brookfield, IL 60513 Email: Phone: 630-723-7256 Website:

Mark I Landscape Inc 1540 Hecht Drive Unit K Bartlett, IL 60103 Email: Phone: 847-648-0008 Website: Maxwell Lawn & Landscaping Alan Maxwell 2925 Kendridge Lane Aurora, IL 60502 Email: Phone: 630-742-5864 McHenry County Lawn Sprinklers Michael Bock P.O. Box 417 Cary, IL 60013 Email: Phone: 847-366-9926

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The Landscape Contractor March 2018

The Landscape Contractor March 2018


New Members —

MetroScapes Chicago Roger Houts 2731 W 23rd St. Chicago, IL 60608 Email: Phone: 312-550-1516 Murphy Landscape & Design George J Murphy 2990 Peachtree Cir. Aurora, IL 60502 Email: Phone: 630-723-6197 Website:

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Pinestone Lawn & Snow 1245 Milwaukee Ave. Suite 307 Glenview, IL 60025 Email: Phone: 847-460-8470 Website: Priority Landscape & Maintenance, LLC Susan Riddering 29822 S State Line Rd. Beecher, IL 60401 Email: Phone: 708-946-6121 Website:

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The Landscape Contractor March 2018

R & R Landscaping & Irrigation Inc Michael Rosploch 2703 St, Vincents Ave. La Salle, IL 61301 Email: Phone: 815-224-9370 Reveal Design Sean Kelley 2900 W Carroll Ave. Chicago, IL 60612 Email: Phone: 630-388-8372 Website: Rooftopia LLC. Jenn Lassa 4200 W Diversey #11 Chicago, IL 60639 Email: Phone: 773-398-9486 Website: Ross and Jack’s Landscaping Inc. Michael Spatola P.O. Box 65 Elmhurst, IL 60126 Email: Phone: 847-451-1591 Website:

TCI Companies, Inc. Cody Barth 405 State Route 117 Goodfield, IL 61742 Email: Phone: 309-965-2057 Website:

Trimline Lawncare Services Dennis Navarro Lake Plumleigh Way Algonquin, IL 60102 Email: Phone: 847-722-2521 Website:

TGF Enterprises, Inc. Forrest Baker 530 North Ave. Libertyville, IL 60048 Email: Phone: 847-968-2524 Website:

Van Drunen Landscape & Nursery David Van Drunen 11111 N Rte 1 Grant Park, IL 60940 Email: Phone: 815-465-6588

The Growing Place Nursery & Flower Farm, Inc. 25W471 Plank Rd. Naperville, IL 60563 Email: Phone: 630-355-4000 Website: Trees “R” Us Inc. John Schultz PO Box 6014 Wauconda, IL 60084 Email: Phone: 847-913-9069 Website:

Western Irrigation Inc Jeff Adamson 26w307 St Charles Rd. Carol Stream, IL 60188 Email: Phone: 630-653-3937 Website: SUPPLIERS Badger Truck Center Cheryl Klein 2326 W Saint Paul Avenue Milwaukee, WI 53233 Email: Phone: 414-316-5873 Website:

The Landscape Contractor March 2018


New Members — Christiansen Farms Larry Christiansen 12151 W. Wilmington Rd. Peotone, IL 60468 Email: Phone: 708-259-5285 Website: Crete Garden Center & Nursery / Oak Ridge Landscape & Maintenance Don Rietveld 1625 East Richton Road Crete, IL 60417 Email: Phone: 708-672-4800 Website: Fabriscape, Inc. Tim Manola 6410 W. 75Th Street, Unit D Chicago, IL 60638 Email: Phone: 708-728-7180 Website:

Fond du Lac Stone & Natural Stone Veneers Int’l Brett King N4224 Highway 175 Fond du Lac, WI 54936 Email: Phone: 920-921-8280 Website: & Fundbox Sasha Dobrolioubov 300 Montgomery Street Suite 900 San Francisco, CA 94104 Email: Phone: 650-437-7453 Website: Graff Gardens & Farm, LLC Duane Graff 7250 Southwest Hwy. Worth, IL 60482 Email: Phone: 708-923-6533 Website:

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The Landscape Contractor March 2018

Hampshire Farms, LLC 14N850 Route 20 Hampshire, IL 60140 Email: Phone: 847-683-7012 Leaves Inspired Tree Nursery Jared Stroobants 426 E. Brooklyn Street Chilton, WI 53014 Email: Phone: 920-522-2765 Website: SRW Products Ken Johnson PO Box 70 Princeton MN 55371 Email: Phone: 773-708-6296 Website:

Tobroco-Giant Rick Morical 5130 Park Ave, Des Moines, IA 50321 Email: Website: GOVERNMENT/NON-PROFIT City of Lake Forest Phil Alderks 800 N. Field Drive, Lake Forest, IL 60045 Email: Phone: 847-615-4341 Website: Oak Brook Park District Bob Johnson 1450 Forest Gate Rd., Oak Brook, IL 60523 Email: Phone: 630-645-9540 Website:

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New Members — EDUCATORS College of Dupage Brian Clement 425 Fawell Blvd. Glen Ellyn, IL 60133 Email: Phone: 630-942-2526 Website: Eco Scapes Vallari Talapatra 218 E. Madison Ave. Wheaton, IL 60187 Email: Phone: 630-336-7659 Website: INDIVIDUALS Austin Eischeid Garden Design Austin Eischeid 6449 N Greenview Avenue #3 Chicago, IL 60626 Email: Phone: 712-210-5780

GreenSite, Inc. Michael Curry 1770 S. Randall Rd, Suite A-266 Geneva, IL 60134 Email: Phone: 847-812-9591 Planned Forest Solutions LLC Andrew Lueck 4315 N. Kenmore Ave. #3S Chicago, IL 60613 Email: Phone: 773-243-7442 Website: Roots 2 Success Landscape Design Linda Taylor Prairie View, IL 60069 Email: SanGen Landscape Designs, LLC Sandy Chhun-Genc 10993 14th Ct, Pleasant Prairie, WI 53158 Email: Phone: 262-220-8561 Website:

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You’ll find the perfect shrubs for challenging landscapes in the Low Scape® aronia series. Low Scape® Hedger offers a short, columnar habit that is perfect for a formal hedge, bursting with white spring flowers. Low Scape® Mound has a tiny, mounded habit with loads of white spring flowers and purple-black fruit in summer. Best of all, they will both thrive almost anywhere, cold climates and hot, wet soils and dry, sun and part shade. 10’

LOW SCAPE® Hedger FULL TO PART SUN USDA ZONE 3, AHS 9 3-5' tall, 2-3' wide


LOW SCAPE® Mound FULL TO PART SUN USDA ZONE 3, AHS 9 1-2' tall, 2' wide

Available from these suppliers Alsip Home & Nursery St. John • 219-365-0882 Cedar Path Nurseries Lockport | Barrington CJ Fiore Prairie View IL • 847-913-1417 Hinsdale Nurseries Willowbrook IL • 630-323-1414 Kaknes Landscaping Supply Naperville IL • 630-416-1002 Lurvey Des Plaines | Park City | Volo Midwest Groundcovers St. Charles IL • 847-742-1793 SiteOne Addison | Naperville

The Landscape Contractor March 2018


New Member Profile Snapshot


110 LeBaron Street Waukegan, IL 60085 (847) 244-6662

by Meta Levin

At the tender age of 23, Keith Gray co-

founded an environmental monitoring and technology company. He had been an environmental engineering student at IIT, a major he chose because he enjoyed being outside and was interested in pollution and natural resources. At first there was high demand for industrial waste water monitoring and treatment. So much that in 10 years the company grew from two employees – Gray and his business partner – to 130. In the 1990s, however, a lot of heavy industry began leaving the Chicago area. Not long after that, Gray was approached by one of his customers, who wanted to retire. Did Gray want to buy what was then known as Integrated Lakes Management? He did. He sold out to his partner and took over the company, which remains a client of the original firm. In the intervening years, Integrated Lakes Management became ILM to denote its expansion from water and water ways to include the land surrounding it. In 2005, when Gray took over at ILM, it employed eight full time equivalent workers and had $800,000 in sales. “That was a shock to me,” says Gray, “because I came from a company that had 130. It was a real learning experience.” Now ILM does $4 million in business annually, employs 35 people and has locations in Waukegan, McHenry County and West Chicago, IL. Along the way, Gray has learned some important lessons. “When I was at (the first company), I was afraid that if I was not there, it wouldn’t continue,” he says. “This time I have purposely decentralized authority and responsibility.” In other words, he has learned to delegate. That isn’t the only reason for ILM’s growth. “It’s grown, because of the people,” says Gray. Sarah Zink, whose father had worked for Gray at his previous company, started at ILM as an intern. Originally set to go into the Peace Corps, she approached Gray at the end of the summer and asked to stay on. That was 11 years ago. Now 64

Zink is ILM’s vice president. “She is a wonderful person and has worn every hat in the company,” says Gray. Gregg Zink “came with the company,” says Gray. He was one of the original eight employees and one of four still working for ILM. Now he is manager of field operations. “When the company was small, we needed people who were well rounded and willing to do anything,” says Gray. Zink was one of those able to grow with the company. Zink met Sarah, his wife, at ILM. Jackie Weber, now office manager, was a CPA looking for part time work when she joined ILM. She became the company bookkeeper. Now she is “more than full time,” says Gray and has told him more than once how much she enjoys her job. Rob Rinkenberger came to ILM from a stint as superintendent of the Fox Waterway Agency, in charge of the Fox Chain of Lakes. Gray had purchased some specialized equipment with which Rinkenberger had experience. The machinery allows ILM to remove sediment, clear overgrown areas and clear flooded culverts. “We can mow off sides, fix culverts and put in native plants,” says Gray. ILM originally was a MELA member and came to ILCA when the two organizations came together. “ILCA has the horsepower to offer training and tell the story of what a quality contactor has to offer,” says Gray. “The more people understand, the better outcome we are going to have.” Gray works hard to ensure that clients and others do understand. “On week nights, I spend a lot of time giving presentations in Lake County,” he says. His audience ranges from property managers, homeowners’ associations and those who live in lake communities. He stresses that landscapes with native plants have longer maturation processes. “Consumers who want that need to set their expectations realistically,” he says. “It could take five to seven years.”

The Landscape Contractor March 2018

Classified Ads HELP WANTED Landscape Designer/Salesperson Bruss Landscaping of Wheaton is looking to add another talented Architect/Designer to our team. 2017 marks our 65th year of providing high quality residential landscape design and installation services to DuPage and eastern Kane counties. If you have a passion for residential design and sales, are self-motivated and focused on superior customer service we would like to meet you. Candidates must have earned a degree in Landscape Design/ Architecture/Horticulture. At least 3 years professional experience is preferred however we are open to recent graduates as well. Bruss is a relaxed work environment, although seasonally hectic, with a strong benefit package. Eric Bruss,, (630) 665-1600. Landscape Design/ Sales Award winning landscape firm for over 45 years in the Bloomington/ Normal area is seeking an experienced professional to join our team. We are looking for an outgoing, aggressive sales person with project management experience, landscape design knowledge and outstanding customer service skills. Must have a degree in Landscape Architecture/ Horticulture or similar and a minimum of 3 years experience in a landscape design/ sales environment. Salary plus commission and benefits. Send resume and salary requirements to All applicants will remain confidential. Account Manager Grow with us! Balanced Environments is looking for a full-time addition to our sales team. As an Account Manager you will manage a portfolio of commercial landscape and snow accounts, prepare and present site recommendations, maintain client relationships and develop new clients through sales of new services. Our organization offers a compensation plan that includes a competitive salary/commission structure, health/dental/disability insurance and 401k plan. For a confidential consideration please send your inquiry and resume today to or call Ed Reier at 847-833-3594. Customer Service Representative Join our team at our new Bolingbrook location! Responsibilities include taking & processing quotes & orders, maintaining assigned customer accounts, implementing sales and marketing plans and more. Candidates must possess excellent people & customer service skills. English/Spanish fluency is beneficial. Email resume to

HELP WANTED LANDSCAPE DESIGN & SALES Green Grass Landscape Architecture & Construction, an always growing and expanding design/build firm serving the western suburbs since 1997, seeks to fill one position. Green Grass, Inc. focuses on providing a full spectrum of landscape services while specializing in high-end residential design and construction. Applicant is to have extensive knowledge of site analysis, plant and hardscape design, construction methods, grading, estimating, sales, client/project management and preparation of permit documents with construction details. Must possess the ability to work and perform in a fast-paced, detail oriented environment. Proficiency in Dynascape Design, Dynascape Manage and SketchUp is required. Applicant is to have a BLA or related degree with 3 years minimum experience. We offer a competitive salary based on experience, a strong benefit package and room for growth. Please email resume, portfolio and salary requirements to All inquiries are kept confidential. Midwest - Chicagoland Certified Arborist & Sales Assist owner in daily operations, sales and client contact for an established territory. Must possess skills in identification of plants, insects and disease. Full benefits include company vehicle, medical, dental, life insurance and retirement plan. This is a salary plus commission position (6 figures). Submit resume to: Vince Winkler, Winkler’s Tree & Landscaping, Inc., PO Box 1154, LaGrange Pk, IL 60526 708-544-1219 or Discretion assured. Landscape Designer / Sales Professional Full time Landscape Designer / Sales Professional is needed to meet the demands of an expanding business. Elan Landscape Development is a Design/Build/Maintenance firm located in Libertyville. Our focus is on the high end residential and light commercial market. An Ideal candidate will be an excellent communicator, will have at least 5 years experience, will be proficient in site analysis, hardscape design, garden design and project planning and possess an extensive knowledge of plants. Drawing and rendering skills are a plus. Please e-mail Dan at, or call the office at 847-362-1483.

The Landscape Contractor March 2018

HELP WANTED ACRES GROUP LANDSCAPING **WE ARE HIRING** Below is a listing the current job openings at all (3) of our Chicago land facilities v SNOW SHOVELERS (part-time) $21.00 HR v SNOW TRUCK DRIVERS -CDL & NON-CDL (part-time) $27.00 HR (All snow job openings available in Wauconda / Roselle / Plainfield) v IRRIGATION FOREMAN/TECHNICIAN (Plainfield) v IRRIGATION LABORER (2 in Roselle / Plainfield) v ACCOUNT MANAGER (Sales) (Wauconda / Roselle / Plainfield) v REGIONAL ACCOUNT MANAGER (Sales) (Wauconda / Roselle) v PLANT HEALTHCARE TECHNICIAN (Plainfield / Wauconda) v TREE CLIMBER (Wauconda) Please contact Julie Ellinger with any questions at 847.487.3257 or email your resume to Julie. Check out our website for additional information and exciting news happening at Acres Group in 2018! Please LIKE us on Facebook and visit our Glassdoor page too. Branch Manager Balanced Environments, Inc. has an immediate opening for an experienced landscape Branch Manager for our Old Mill Creek location in Lake County, IL. This position will oversee branch operations which include scheduling crews and monitoring quality along with controlling labor, material, and equipment costs for service lines that include: maintenance, installations, irrigation and snow. Must have adequate computer and technological skills, ability to estimate maintenance and installations, understand job costing and financial statements, along with other managerial skills. Bi-lingual a plus. Our organization offers a compensation plan that includes a competitive salary structure Health, Dental, Vision, Short-term Disability and 401(k) benefits offered - Please submit your resume and pay requirement to be considered for this role to: or call 847395-7120 ext. 204. Plant Health Care Division Sales Manager We are seeking an experienced individual to build off of our current PHC platform to manage and grow our Plant Health Care Division. Send resume to: or call 847-949-9245


Classified Ads HELP WANTED



Operarations Project Manager The general function of the Operations Project Manager is to provide the necessary leadership to plan, organize, direct, supervise, coordinate, and control assigned projects in order to meet project completion requirements and profitability objectives, while maintaining and building good customer relationships. The candidate should possess the ability to effectively communicate with a wide variety of constituents, and have proven capabilities in multi-tasking, problem solving and prioritizing workloads. The right candidates will become part of the team to ultimately learn, gain experience, and grow all while taking on more responsibilities. Responsibilities: • Ensure Production lead times are con sistent with sales commitments • Coordinate and oversee all logistics associated with the installation process including; onsite preconstruction meetings, product delivery logistics, onsite assistance, dealing with any onsite logistical or product issues • You are a self-starter, accountable, driven, ethical, hard-working, personable, and work well independently and with • Experience with Project Management and ability to read civil engineering drawings and drafting plans

Residential Account Manager Location: Western Suburbs - Naperville, Illinois

Residential Account Manager Location: Western Suburbs - Naperville, Illinois

For more than 40 years, Western DuPage Landscaping has design, installed and maintained unique landscapes for family homes, large residential sites, and everything in between. Western DuPage Landscaping is looking for a talented and self-motivated Residential Account Manager to join our team. The qualified candidate will be the main point of contact for our clients in obtaining high quality landscape services. Responsibilities: Provides excellent leadership & communication between clients and crew, Develops & maintains long-term relationships to ensure their expectations are met throughout the cycle of their contracts. Creates clients proposals, contracts, and recommendations. Skills: Excellent communications skills, 2+ yrs of account management, strong organizational skills, and knowledge of plant material a plus. Benefits: Year round, full time, salaried position, company car, paid vacation & sick days, health, dental, and life insurance, 401k w/company match.

For more than 40 years, Western DuPage Landscaping has design, installed and maintained unique landscapes for family homes, large residential sites, and everything in between. Western DuPage Landscaping is looking for a talented and self-motivated Residential Account Manager to join our team. The qualified candidate will be the main point of contact for our clients in obtaining high quality landscape services. Responsibilities: Provides excellent leadership & communication between clients and crew, Develops & maintains long-term relationships to ensure their expectations are met throughout the cycle of their contracts. Creates clients proposals, contracts, and recommendations. Skills: Excellent communications skills, 2+ yrs of account management, strong organizational skills, and knowledge of plant material a plus. Benefits: Year round, full time, salaried position, company car, paid vacation & sick days, health, dental, and life insurance, 401k w/company match.

Please send resume to: Landscape Chemical Applicator Seeking an individual that possess Illinois Pesticide Applicator or Operator License, or be willing to obtain one upon employment. 5+ years experience in Landscape Industry. Have appropriate math skills, and plant health care knowledge. Valid drivers license required. Send resume to: or call 847-949-9245

Please send resumes to:

Please send resumes to:

Outside Sales Rep.

Landscape Salesperson/ Designer Are you a creative person who gives outstanding customer service? If so, Planter’s Palette Landscaping is looking to hire a Landscape Salesperson/ Designer who wants to create customers’ dream gardens. Qualifications: Positive, outgoing attitude, ready to be part of a great team, good communication and organizational skills, education in landscape architecture/design or related field, strong plant knowledge, Design/build experience is helpful. Contact: David Tyznik - dtyznik@planterspalette. com or 630-293-1040 ext. 103

Midwest Trading is located in Virgil, IL and our products include horticultural supplies such as containers and container growing media, peat moss, bark, compost, tools and Quonset growing structures. We are seeking an individual with a proven sales record, preferably to the Landscape Market. Emphasis on new business but also growing existing accounts. Focus will be on landscape maintenance accounts, design build accounts and project specifiers. Fluency in Spanish a plus. Must have good computer skills. We offer an excellent salary, commission and benefits. Please contact Cara at 847-468-2017 or visit our website for more information or to apply. www.


James Martin Associates, Inc. is a leader in the Landscape and Snow Management industry and has been providing services to our customers for over 40 years. We are seeking candidates for the following positions:

Landscape & Snow Operations Associates

Irrigation Technicians

Design Build Sales

Landscape Designer & Estimator

Team Administrator

Contact Beth, via email at or call 847-876-8052, to learn more.

Landscape Architecture • Construction • Maintenance • Snow Management


The Landscape Contractor March 2018

HELP WANTED Account Manager Position Hanson Landscape & Design has been a leader in the Chicagoland Landscape industry for over 17 years, and is continually growing. We are seeking an Experienced Commercial Account Manager to fill our growing team. This position includes employee benefits - 401K, Health Insurance Company Vehicle, Competitive Salary. Responsibilities Include but Not Limited to: Proposals - New Lawn Maintenance and Enhancement Sales - New Sales Leads Supervision of Crews - Customer Relations - Snow Removal Sales and Management - Experience: 2 Years Minimum - Bilingual a Plus - Knowledge of Equipment used - Plant Knowledge a Plus Driver’s License Required. Please email your resume to if interested.

Landscape Account Manager (Senior/Junior Level positions available)

Winters Landscape is an established and well recognized Landscape Maintenance and Design/Build Construction Firm with 30 years of experience. We seek an experienced individual with similar core values to ours and a proven successful track record to join our team and grow with our company. Our reputation for dedicated and excellent service, resulting in our relationships with our clients sets us apart. Skills: Minimum 3-5 years of Commercial Landscape and Snow sales and account management. A successful track record with an established portfolio of Commercial based clientele to build upon. The ability to present a knowledgeable and professional image and communicate with high level clientele. Possess an energetic, engaging, positive character; while being self-motivated, and having a focused & dedicated work ethic; and a resourceful, no-limits winning attitude. Job Requirements: New Sales and Business Development, working with homeowner associations, corporate campuses, professional/ institutional facilities, commercial/retail developers, and industrial/warehouse facilities. Account Management, using a direct hands-on approach to client interaction and property development, interacting with field supervisors to execute installs to meet the intended results, and maintain the client’s satisfaction at a high level to optimize client retention. Junior account manager will manage a small portfolio while shadowing a senior level account manager. Benefits: Competitive salary and incentive based sales commission earning structure, matching 401K, health care program, flexible paid vacation, and company vehicle. Please send resume to:

HELP WANTED CHALET LANDSCAPE Residential Design/Build Firm North Chicago, IL We invite you to join us at Chalet as we leap into our next century! To maximize employee satisfaction and bring more solid work/life balance, we have restructured internally. As a result we have some great opportunities. Full details about our positions are at (please check us out there) but the highlights of three great full-time year-round opportunities are: LANDSCAPE DESIGNER - we are seeking a creative person with 3+ years of experience to create digital designs in AutoCAD, 3-D models in Sketchup, and hand renderings of our residential landscape designs. LANDSCAPE PROJECT MANAGER - supervise residential landscape construction projects from planning and estimating and the steps along the way through installation and customer satisfaction. CLIENT RELATIONSHIP MANAGER develop, strengthen and service our residential maintenance clients by engaging with customers, recommending enhancements, and partnering with production to ensure the highest quality. Please check us out on the web for complete job descriptions. You can also contact our HR Manager, at with your resume and samples from your portfolio. Come make a difference working alongside some great teammates at Chalet! Please send resumes to: Landscape Designer/Sales Jane Dilworth & Associates, a small and wellestablished landscape design/build firm in Downers Grove, seeks an energetic, creative and experienced landscape designer/sales person to join our team. Qualifications: • Excellent hand drafting skills • Plant & hardscape knowledge • Exceptional client-service skills • Solid organizational and time management skills • Able to handle multiple projects while meeting deadlines in a fast-paced environment • Ability to design, estimate and sell the landscape installation • Degree in Landscape Architecture or Horticulture • Minimum 4 years professional experience required Salary and benefits based on qualifications and experience. Submit resumes to:

The Landscape Contractor March 2018

HELP WANTED Wholesale Plant Sales / Account Management / Business Development Cedar Path Nurseries , a grower and landscape materials distribution company is growing fast . We are seeking a highly motivated and energetic individual to help us to continue to grow and manage our business. The ideal candidate will have some previous landscape or garden center experience . In this position you will develop new business as well as manage an assigned group of accounts in Northern IL . Plant knowledge and some basic computer skills are required . Strong organizational and communications skills are needed . This is a full time position with some flexibility in scheduling . Our position is a great opportunity for an individual that wants to take the NEXT STEP in career advancement in the green goods industry . There will be an opportunity to advance within the company to a site manager position for a successful candidate . Competitive compensation including commission and benefits . Email resume to Outside Maintenance Sales Representative Cut Above Landscaping, Westmont, IL, is actively searching for an Outside Maintenance Sales Representative who has a proven track record of successfully building relationships, developing new business and increasing revenue. Experience in the landscape/green industry is ideal. This career opportunity offers a competitive base salary plus uncapped, quarterly-paid commissions, a company vehicle program, a performance-based bonus program, reimbursed business expenses and other company benefits. To apply for this position, and learn more about job requirements and responsibilities, please forward a resume and cover letter to: Recruiting Director ( with “Maintenance Sales Position” as your email subject Account Manager Cut Above Landscaping, Westmont, IL, is actively searching for an Account Manager to service our recurring book of business and achieve gross profit objectives through leadership and management of staff while meeting contractual commitments to customers in a timely, high quality manner. Experience in the landscape/green industry is ideal. This career opportunity offers a competitive salary, a performance-based bonus program, reimbursed business expenses and other company benefits. To apply for this position, and learn more about job requirements and responsibilities, please forward a resume and cover letter to: Recruiting Director ( with “Account Manager” as your email subject


Classified Ads HELP WANTED



Project Manager



Cut Above Landscaping, Westmont, IL, is actively searching for a Project Manager a proven track record of success in managing multiple projects and crews while hitting the forecasted gross profit margins. Ideal candidate will instruct, direct, and monitor staff; providing materials, directions, tools and logistical support to the field in order to maximize output per labor hour. Experience in the landscape/green industry, specifically hardscapes, lighting and ornamental planting is ideal. This career opportunity offers a competitive salary, a performance-based bonus program, reimbursed business expenses and other company benefits. To apply for this position, and learn more about job requirements and responsibilities, please forward a resume and cover letter to: Recruiting Director ( with “Project Manager” as your email subject Project Sales Representative Cut Above Landscaping, Westmont, IL, is actively searching for an Project Sales Representative who has a proven track record of successfully building relationships, developing new business and increasing revenue. Experience in the landscape/green industry, specifically hardscapes, lighting and ornamental planting is ideal. This career opportunity offers a competitive base salary plus uncapped, quarterly-paid commissions, a company vehicle program, a performance-based bonus program, reimbursed business expenses and other company benefits. To apply for this position, and learn more about job requirements and responsibilities, please forward a resume and cover letter to: Recruiting Director ( with “Project Sales Position” as your email subject Landscape Architect / Sales Position King’s Landscaping, Co., is a family owned, three-generation company in the South-Western suburbs. We are seeking a dynamic sales professional with a flair for unique design and outstanding customer service. The ideal candidate with have a degree in landscape architecture, a willingness to learn, and a minimum of three years experience. We have a casual, corporate culture and want a self-motivated individual who can create client relationships and have the ability to follow through from introduction to installation. Pay will be commensurate with experience and potential Benefits are included. Please send resume to:

CB Conlin Landscapes Inc., located in South Naperville, is seeking an experienced Project Manager who can effectively schedule, organize, coordinate and oversee four to five Hardscape and Landscape Installation Crews. The PM would be responsible for daily communication with our Design Team, Purchaser, Subcontractors and Installation Crews to ensure the work is being completed properly and efficiently. Advanced understanding of landscape plans and construction details as well as knowledge of hardscape/softscape materials is a must. Permit processing knowledge is a plus. We are offering a full-time, salary position with excellent benefits. Please forward resumes to Bertog Landscape (Wheeling) is seeking an individual for an account representative position. The ideal candidate has a strong work ethic, the ability to follow through, has a passion for landscape and enjoys being a landscape adviser. Excellent horticultural practices and quality above the industry standard makes it easy to take pride in our work at Bertog. With a competitive salary, an attractive performance incentive, and benefits, we are looking for a person who has 2-3 years of landscape experience and/or a landscape-related degree, as well as a positive reputation in the industry. This opportunity will be given to someone who wants to grow as professional while helping grow the company through customer retention, enhancement/design sales, and new business development. Please send resume and contact info to Collections Supervisor The Morton Arboretum seeks a full-time Collections Supervisor to supervise and participate in the essential functions associated with the maintenance and care of collections and areas to maintain Arboretum grounds in excellent horticultural and aesthetic condition. Take on seasonal role of leading snow teams during snow removal operations. Associate degree required; Bachelor’s degree preferred in horticulture or related field. 3+ years of relevant work experience required. Experience working in a public garden environment preferred. Supervisory skills strongly preferred. Strong knowledge of basic plant culture and disease/insect pest diagnostics under Midwestern conditions required. Ability to identify major plant genera and species, while also possessing knowledge of names and characteristics of a wide range of woody plants required. To apply, visit EOE

Design/Build/Maintenance firm in Chicago Competitive wages; year-end bonus; great work environment Annette Held Landscape Design Contact: JOB FAIR / FERIA DE TRABAJO! FOR LANDSCAPE SEASON PARA la TEMPORADA de JARDINERIA SATURDAY MARCH 10, 2018 SABADO 10 DE MARZO, 2018 JOB FAIR LOCATIONS / LUGARES DE LAS FERIAS DE TRABAJO SATURDAY MARCH 10, 2018 FROM 8A.M.— 12NOON SABADO 10 DE MARZO, 2018 DE 8A.A LAS 12 MEDIO DIA WAUCONDA/ROSELLE/PLAINFIELD 888-231-1300 Mid-Level Landscape Architect Premier is an award winning, Landscape Architectural/Construction firm, servicing Chicago and its north and west suburbs. We are looking to add talented, creative, and energetic staff to our growing Lemont, Illinois location. We offer progressive career paths, set in a vibrant studio atmosphere, providing many opportunities to improve and strengthen your individual skill set. Premier is hiring for the staff levels below: Mid-Level Landscape Architect Premier offers competitive compensation and benefit packages. Please email resume and sample portfolio to

CLASSIFIED ADS CLOSING DATES & RATES April 2018 issue ads: March 15, 2018 May 2018 issue ads: April 15, 2018 June 2018 issue: May 15, 2018 PLEASE NOTE:


LIMITED TO ILCA MEMBER COMPANIES Magazine Cost is $5 per line Minimum charge $50 Optional Website Cost is $12 per line Minimum charge $120 (About 6 words/line) Call Alycia O’Connor (630) 472-2851 or use the online submission form located at


The Landscape Contractor March 2018

Advertisers 1st Choice Equipment ..............................................39 Arthur Clesen .........................................................62 Bartlett Tree Experts ............................................60 Beaver Creek Nursery .........................................61 Cardno ....................................................................59 Carlin Sales...........................................................58 Cassidy Tire ...........................................................35 Chicago Flower and Garden Show ........................69 Chicagoland Gardening .........................................61 Chi Turf ..................................................................53 Clesen Wholesale....................................................55 Contree Sprayers ...................................................38 Darling Ingredients ...............................................34 Doty Nurseries LLC ................................................4 Green Glen Nursery ..............................................71 B. Haney & Sons, Inc. ..............................................55 Hinsdale Nurseries, Inc. .....................................54 Homer Industries ...................................................25 James Martin Associates ........................................66 JKS Ventures ..........................................................69 Kramer Tree Specialists .........................................58 Lafarge Fox River Stone ...........................................47 Longshadow Planters ........................................15 Mariani Plants ..........................................................6 McGinty Bros. ......................................................60 Midwest Groundcovers ............................................2 Midwest Trading ....................................................17 ProGreen Plus .......................................................58 Rainbow Farm .........................................................48 Rocks Etc. ..............................................................43 Russo Power Equipment .........................................51 Snowfighters Institute ............................................57 Spring Meadow Nursery .......................................63 Stockyards Brick Co. .............................................45 The Care of Trees ..................................................58 The Mulch Center .................................................61 Unilock, Inc. ...........................................................72 Vermeer Midwest ...................................................41 Xylem Ltd. ...........................................................43

The Landscape Contractor March 2018


Before You Go...

“Make No Little Plans” By Scott Mehaffey

When I drive by my projects from years ago, I

am often shocked to see overgrown or poorly maintained plants. Sometimes these properties have sold, and subsequent owners and/ or their landscape companies have no awareness or understanding of my design intent — or just a very different vision for the landscape. Most landscape architects and designers consider not only the house or building, but also it’s relationship to neighboring properties. We create transition zones between the architecture and the surrounding landscape, relating design elements and landscape style to architectural style and scale, composing the surrounding landscape to create views to and from the building. Borrowed views into surrounding properties or the streetscape are framed and enhanced, and objectionable views are screened or buffered. The intended effects sometimes only exist on paper (or in the designer’s imagination) for many years, which is why we should explain design intent right on the plan: the document most likely to be saved. What we sometimes fail to explain, or take for granted, is how the landscape design responds and contributes to the neighborhood or community. On larger projects, this might be explained in the maintenance specifications, but too often, this information is lost in discarded emails with the client, or never even discussed. Every community has a pervasive character and visual context worthy of discussion and consideration during the design process. Chances are, that “sense of place” attracted your clients to locate their home or business there in the first place. Whether it’s the vibrant and lively community feel of an urban neighborhood, the woodsy and quiet character of an older sub-


urb, or the sunny lawns and orderly tree-lined streets of a cornfield subdivision, our landscapes are part of the larger scene and either enhance or detract from that setting. O.C. Simonds, the famous landscape gardener (as he preferred to be called) once wrote, “The landscape gardener must be a dreamer, a designer, an inventor, a creator—a dreamer more than most designers because it may take years for his designs to develop. His aim is to create beautiful scenery that includes all one sees whenever he walks or rides through country or city.” Perhaps more famously, Simonds’s contemporary, the architect and planner Daniel H. Burnham wrote, “Make no little plans; they have no magic to stir men’s blood and probably themselves will not be realized. Make big plans; aim high in hope and work, remembering that a noble, logical diagram once recorded will never die, but long after we are gone be a living thing, asserting itself with ever-growing insistency.” So take some time this year to discuss “the big picture” with your clients, explaining that by improving their landscape they’re also investing in the community. And be sure to document your design intent to guide ongoing maintenance toward the future realization of your big plans! Editor’s Note: This series of columns is by Chicago-area landscape architect Scott Mehaffey. Scott has enjoyed a long and varied career in the landscape world. He has spent time in the employ of contractors, public gardens, and the City of Chicago. He now operates his own design firm and is an ILCA member. His musings are intended to be reflective, inspirational, and occasionally motivational.

The Landscape Contractor March 2018

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The Landscape Contractor magazine Digital Edition March 2018  
The Landscape Contractor magazine Digital Edition March 2018  

Illinois Landscape Contractors Association