Front Row (left to right): Carolyn Ulrich, Karen Moore, Laurie McGhee, Katrina Chipman, Julia Fitzpatrick-Cooper, Kelly Girup
Middle Row (left to right): Brenda McMahon, Mary Allen, Steve Meyer, Nina Koziol, Jim Nau, Neil Gilbert
Back Row (left to right): Marty Bartz, Jacob Burns, Brent Horvath, Kyle Lambert
Mary Creighton Allen
Landscape Architect/Landscape Contractor Plandscape Inc. Elburn, IL
Mary brings to the group 32 years of experience in the landscape industry. Her experience began with a large commercial landscape contractor where she worked with commercial maintenance clients designing and coordinating landscape enhancements and seasonal color programs. Her job evolved into purchasing all plant material for their extensive installations department. Now at Plandscape Inc., Mary is in charge of the maintenance department where her responsibilities include sales, scheduling and managing crews. Perennial garden rehab and design, complete her responsibilities.
Education/Professional Affiliations: B.S. Landscape Architecture, Michigan State University
Horticulture Lab Technician/Grower, College of DuPage
Martin graduated from Harper College with an Associates Degree in Applied Science, along with 5 Horticulture Certificates. Marty’s work experience in the horticulture industry includes Nursery Manager at Geimer’s Greenhouse, Assistant Manager of St. Aubin Nursery and Grower/Yard Supervisor at Rocco Fiore and Sons, Inc. Since 2013 Marty has been the Horticulture Lab Technician/Grower in the horticulture department. His responsibilities include both growing in the greenhouse and maintenance/development of the Landscape Lab. Marty is an advisor for the Horticulture Club. He is also in charge of taking students from the department to the National Association of Landscape Professional Student Career Days competition each year, a three-day competitive event among students enrolled in horticulture programs from more than 70 colleges and universities across the country. Students compete in events that are directly related to the skills necessary for a career in the landscape industry. Marty can be reached at (630) 942-3807 or email at email@example.com .
Horticulture Coordinator, The Morton Arboretum, Lisle, IL
Katrina began her career in horticulture assisting with her mother’s self-owned landscape business, Ingrid’s Landscaping in Ryan, Iowa, during her high school and college years. She helped with everything from pond maintenance to hardscape installation, to landscape installation. After receiving her degree, Katrina worked as a Natural Area Technician before beginning her career at The Morton Arboretum, where for four years Katrina maintained the 4-acre Children’s Garden. In her current role as the Horticulture Coordinator, Katrina maintains the visitor center landscape, as well as coordinates the seasonal annual displays throughout the arboretum.
Education/Professional Affiliations: B.S. in Biology, Iowa State University
Professor Emeritus, Horticulture, College of DuPage, Glen Ellyn, IL
Julia was a full-time faculty member in the Horticulture department at College of DuPage for more than 28 years. She continues to teach and lecture through The Morton Arboretum and other organizations. In addition to teaching, her career has included a variety of positions in arboreta, wholesale nurseries, retail garden centers, horticultural therapy programs, community education programs and high school horticulture programs. In 2001 she participated in an international faculty exchange program and traveled to Finland to study their horticulture industry and educational system. Julia is a certified Landscape for Life ™ Trainer which is a sustainable landscape program sponsored by the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center and the United States Botanic Garden.
B. S. in Horticulture and M.S., Agricultural Education, The Ohio State University; Past Board Member, Midwest Ecological Landscape Alliance
Floriculturist Foreman Garfield Park Conservatory, Chicago Park District. Chicago, IL
Neil first began transforming public landscapes for the Chicago Park District along its iconic lakefront, where he designed and maintained150 gardens over the last decade. Currently at Garfield Park Conservatory, his primary responsibilities include the design and maintenance of its 13.5 landscaped acres while managing nine specialty greenhouses dedicated to a curated plant collection. In addition, Neil collaborates for the overall care and design of the conservatory’s public display houses and oversees daily operations for the entire facility. He is very passionate about rehabbing landscapes with a long-term plan for sustainability, from the use of native Midwestern plants, to non-invasive ornamentals and xeriscaping. Neil has enhanced the over-all aesthetics of public parks by incorporating various factors; designing with all season interest, focusing on creating habitat for wildlife, utilizing proper plant selection to grow under adverse urban growing conditions for maximum patron usage.
Education/Professional Affiliations: B.S. in Environmental Sciences, Antioch College
Inventory Manager, Doty Nurseries, Inc., Maple Park, IL
Kelly has been working in the industry since 1999, where she started out as a cashier at The Growing Place in Naperville. Since then, she has gained experience in landscape design, maintenance, irrigation, commercial installation, and retail and wholesale sales. Her plant knowledge and experience in the industry has led her to Doty Nurseries, Inc. where she is the inventory manager. In her free time, Kelly enjoys gardening on her acre of land in Warrenville and teaching her three daughters how to pull weeds.
Plant Evaluation Manager, Chicago Botanic Garden, Glencoe, IL
Richard has been the Plant Evaluation Manager at the Chicago Botanic Garden since 1986. He has a horticulture degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Richard is an instructor for the School of the Chicago Botanic Garden, the author of Plant Evaluation Notes, and is an author and contributing editor for Fine Gardening. In 2005, Richard received the Perennial Plant Association’s Academic Award for teaching excellence. The Plant Evaluation Program received the Award for Program Excellence from the American Public Garden Association in 2008.
Intrinsic Perennial Gardens, Inc., Hebron, IL
Brent grew up in the green industry working for his parents at their garden center, landscape and florist company. He graduated with a B.S. from Oregon State University in 1991 and started growing finished perennials for the wholesale trade. Today, Intrinsic Perennial Gardens, Inc. lists more than 800 varieties and sells many more. He has introduced over 100 perennials and has filed over 40 plant patents. Brent’s book on Sedum for Timber press, came out in April of 2014. In 2015 it received a Gold award from the garden writers Association.
B.S. in Horticulture from Oregon State University in 1991. Perennial Plant Association, Sedum Society, Illinois Green Industry Association, American Rock Garden Society.
Amy graduated from University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign with a Bachelor of Science in Agricultural Science and a Bachelor of Science in Ornamental Horticulture. She has worked at both wholesale and retail horticultural companies including retail garden centers and greenhouses. She has been a Part-Time Faculty Member of the Horticulture Department at College of DuPage since 1992. Amy was awarded the Outstanding Part-Time Faculty Award in 2001. She teaches HORT 1100 Introduction to Horticulture, HORT 1110, Applied Plant Taxonomy, HORT 2255 Greenhouse Crop Production, HORT 1110 Applied Plant Taxonomy, and HORT 2257 Bedding Plant Production. Since October 2012, Amy is the Greenhouse Supervisor at College of DuPage. Amy can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (630) 942-3806.
Horticulturist, Garden Writer, Palos Park, IL
Nina teaches garden design and horticulture classes at the Chicago Botanic Garden, the Morton Arboretum, and for other organizations and clubs. Her articles have appeared in Organic Gardening, Fine Gardening, Old-House Journal, Old-House Interiors, Chicagoland Gardening, Landscape Contractor and she’s been a garden contributor to the Chicago Tribune since 1995. She is co-author of “The Historic Homes and Gardens of Lockport, IL 1838-2000” for the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency. Born in Paris, she made her first garden visit to Versailles as an infant. Her flower and shrub borders, containers and edible gardens take inspiration from her grandparents’ garden in Essex, England, which was a combination of flowers, herbs, vegetables, rock garden, pond, potting shed, greenhouse and blue hydrangeas the size of basketballs.
B.S. in Education/Environmental Science, Northeastern Illinois University, 1987. Garden Writers Association. Perennial Plant Association. Illinois Landscape Contractors Assn.
Perennial and Rose Manager, The Growing Place, Aurora and Naperville, IL
Kyle has been with The Growing Place since 1996. He oversees the production of perennials and herbs. He coordinates inventory of over one thousand perennial varieties at both locations of The Growing Place. He is a plant collector that enjoys experiencing new varieties as well as the importance of incorporating natives. Kyle has given presentations and tours for garden clubs and the Chicago Flower and Garden Show.
Education/Professional Affiliations: A.A.S in Greenhouse Management, Joliet Junior College; member of Perennial Plant Association and Wild Ones.
Customer Service Representative, Mariani Plants, Inc., Kenosha, WI and Garden Prairie, IL
Laurie’s lifelong love of gardening led her to a career in the green industry in 1990. She started her career in horticulture in a retail garden center, and then moved into the wholesale side of the industry. She joined Mariani Plants in 2012. Mariani Plants is a wholesale nursery that grows and sells trees, ornamentals, evergreens, shrubs, roses, and perennials. She frequently lectures at area Garden Clubs and Garden Centers.
IGIA Certified Nursery Professional; Kishwaukee College Horticulture Advisory Board
Brenda found her way into the horticulture industry 26 years ago, when she decided dirt and plants would be her objects d’art. Though growing up on a farm in Kansas exposed her to agriculture, discovering gardens as art was a new concept. Garden design, garden installation and maintenance, wholesale nursery sales, and retail garden center sales compose her list of experiences. Highlights include involvement in the Perennial Plant Symposium 2002, the initial installation of the Piet Oudolf garden at Midwest Groundcovers, and giving perennial talks for a variety of gardens centers.
B.S., Kansas State University, A.S. Horticulture, Kishwaukee College
Illinois Landscape Contractors Association
Horticulturist, Chicago Park District, Chicago, IL
Since 1973, Steve has worked in various aspects of the green industry. In 1998, he began working for the Chicago Park District Natural Resources Department working specifically at both the Lincoln Park and Garfield Park Conservatories. Steve has a broad knowledge of plant materials from garden perennials and annuals to interior tropicals, aquatics and orchids. His duties include overseeing the growing and display of plants in and around the Conservatory campuses.
Education / Professional Affiliations:
Associate Degrees in Horticulture Marketing and Horticulture Production from Gateway Technical College Kenosha, WI. Degree in Greenhouse Management from DuPage Horticultural School, West Chicago, IL. Member of American Horticultural Society, Association of Education and Greenhouse Curators (AERGC), American Orchid Society, Illinois Orchid Society
Karen R. Moore
Garden Designer, Coventry Gardeners, Ltd., Westmont, IL
Karen started Coventry Gardeners, Ltd. in 1986. It is a niche business specializing in design, installation and maintenance of perennial flower gardens. Coventry Gardeners’ gardens have been featured in Better Homes and Gardens magazine and other publications. Coventry Gardeners was awarded an ILCA merit award for Residential Landscape Construction.
Education/Professional Affiliations: B.S. in Education from University of Georgia; Perennial Plant Association
Manager; The Gardens at Ball Ambassador
Jim Nau has managed the greenhouses and gardens of the Ball Horticultural Company in West Chicago, Illinois since 1982. His current role is Curator of the Ball Horticultural Archives and Tours for the gardens. He is the author of two books; the Ball Culture Guide and the Ball Perennial Manual as well as the editor of the Ball RedBook – 18th Edition.
He is the Past President and judge for All America Selections as well the Past President of the Association of Specialty Cut Flower Growers (ASCFG). Jim is the recipient of the Perennial Plant Association’s Garden Media Award winner and has been a keynote speaker for the Ohio Florists’ Association as well as the Southeast Greenhouse Conference. In addition, Jim received the Medallion of Honor award from All America Selections for Outstanding Achievement in Horticulture.
Growing and gardening are a passion with Jim. In his spare time he manages the family grain farm in Iowa.
Susan J. Stone
Perennial Plant Buyer, Lurvey Landscape Supply & Garden Center, Des Plaines, IL
Stone has been involved in all stages of perennial production, sales, inventory management, and plant buying for several leading Chicagoland nurseries. She is a frequent lecturer for area garden clubs and an instructor at Morton Arboretum. Currently, she sits as the Central Regional Director of the Perennial Plant Association.
Education/Professional Affiliations: Perennial Plant Association, American Horticulture Society
Deirdre Toner, ASLA
D. T. Design, LLC, Old Mill Creek, IL
Deirdre’s professional “green” career started in the international floriculture industry and soon expanded to include urban landscapes and container gardens for her Chicago-based company, Florabunda Limited. As a Project Director for a large suburban landscape company, she expanded to include landscape construction and perennial expertise and now focuses on landscape design and project management for D.T. Design, LLC. Horticultural specialties include traditional landscapes and prairie development with native plants.
Editor, Chicagoland Gardening, Chicago IL
Carolyn is a self-taught gardener who sat down one day and started writing garden columns, an event she considers akin to a visitation from the Muses in the Classical sense. After a year writing for the neighborhood newspaper she joined the Chicago Sun-Times for seven years, writing a weekly column called The Cultivated Gardener. She then joined Chicagoland Gardening magazine and is currently its editor. She has written freelance for Garden Design, Horticulture, House Beautiful, Chicago Tribune and has won Quill & Trowel awards from the Garden Writers Association.
Education: B.A. in English, University of Kansas; M.A.T. in English, Northwestern University; B.S. in Photography, Columbia College; Garden Writers Association,Perennial Plant Association