About Us

functional livable spaces

“Michael’s goal—creating functional livable spaces that impact people’s daily lives while providing a true sense of enjoyment—has been the number one priority since day one.”

Cottage Gardener, Ltd. was established in 1994 by Michael Patek as a garden service company in Oak Park and River Forest, Illinois.

He had spent the previous twelve years working as a Project Manager for a Commercial Interiors Company specializing in high end Hotel, Restaurant and Retail Interiors where his experience taught him that the “attention to the details” is the most important element of any project.

Michael’s goal—creating functional livable spaces that impact people’s daily lives while providing a true sense of enjoyment—has been the number one priority since day one.

The key to his success has been education, not only his own self-education in returning to school for a landscape design degree, but also that of passing knowledge on to his customers.

The education of ideas and the exploration of all the possible solutions to the client’s residential landscape problems allows to the creation of landscapes that, quite simply, people just enjoy living in.

Our humble beginnings as a garden service company has evolved into an award-winning, full-service design build landscape company that creates spaces people love.

Creating functional, livable spaces since 1994

Sustainable landscape practices

Cottage Gardener Ltd has been using sustainable landscape practices in our projects for over 20 years. We provide the following as our ‘Standard Practice’

  • Source our plant material from local nurseries and our stone from local quarries.
  • Minimize the use of chemical fertilizers by using composted soil amendments from companies such as Purple Cow Organics and The Farm’s Composting.
  • Install low cost drip irrigation hoses in our planting beds that operate on low pressure water volume.
  • We are a firm believer in mulch be it leaf, bark, or stone to control weeds and minimize the use of herbicides.
  • Lower the maintenance on our projects by incorporating native plant species whenever possible, selecting plants for the right place to minimize pruning, and grouping plants of similar biological needs.

Using these sustainable practices we craft our landscapes to provide a four season approach in providing interest, color, and excitement to our client’s gardens.

Our Services

See the services Cottage Gardener has been developing it’s expertise in since 1994

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Our Work

Just a sample of the livable spaces Cottage Gardener has been creating in Waukesha, Milwaukee, and Northern Illinois.

See our work