Recently, our property which has been extensively landscaped several times in the last twenty or so years, suffered damage due to the storm in late summer of 2007 and the harsh winter of 2008. It needed a makeover badly. And no one wanted to be bothered. I was so desperate that I did something I usually don’t do. I responded to an advertising card in the packet of mailed cards. I saw the Vista Landscape, Inc. advertisement and hoped this company could help. I decided to call them. So far, I could get no satisfaction from big companies, little companies and even companies that had done work for me over a twenty-year period.
I called and left a message and I actually got a call back that resulted in the opportunity of speaking directly to a person - a good start. And better still, I was able to make an appointment with Sal Mancera jr to come to the house. This seemed like nothing short of a miracle. No one else was willing to help me out. They said: It is a very busy time of year, or the job (a relatively small makeover) wasn’t worth the time, or I would need to outlay $300.00 for a suggested plan whether or not I had the company do the work or I had to guarantee a minimum of $1.000 dollars of work and so on.
I felt like my wishes were answered when Sal arrived, on time. He was pleasant, knowledgeable, helpful, and like a breath of fresh air. As I looked over my problem areas with Sal, he made helpful comments and suggestions. It was clear that he loved and understood plants, and this seemed so reassuring.
Sal told me he began Vista Landscape, Inc. ten years ago. After engaging in varied experiences related to plants over many years, he wanted to offer a range of landscape services and use his many talents. He began by working with his father doing landscape maintenance. Later, he was in charge of growing plants at the now closed nursery, Jamaican Gardens and worked for Evanston Hospital maintaining their grounds.
Sal earned a degree in Ornamental Horticulture and Landscape Design in preparation for opening his own business. He believes in being personally involved in every aspect of his company from answering his own phones, to personally selecting plant material to being a part of his crew. He gets so involved with his customers, that many regard him as extended family.
Looking over the problems on our property, he mentioned a few possible approaches. He explained that it is very challenging to do the kind of makeover our property required because it is problematic to blend new plant material with plants that have been in place for many years. He also said he would come up with a plan in a few days and suggested a probable price range that seemed very reasonable.
After a few days, Sal emailed a suggested plan and a completed formal cost estimate and contract. I liked the plan very much and we agreed to move forward and set up a time for the work to be done. When the day arrived, I was amazed and I happened to have visitors staying with me who were equally amazed. The crew arrived at 8:00 a. m. and had completed the job by 10:00 a. m. With all the previous landscape work I have had done, I never observed a crew that worked as quickly, efficiently and purposefully. Sal says they have worked together for several years.
Watching them remove old, misshapen or dead plant material with lightening speed was very impressive. Then watching the speed of the new plant material put in place was also amazing.
The makeover complete, they headed off to other jobs. Vista Landscape, Inc. offers a full range of services that ranges from maintenance to major installations including design. I can’t recommend this service highly enough. They were careful, considerate, and very competent. I look forward to using their services in the future.
Vista Landscape, Inc.
P.O. Box 545
Skokie, IL 60076
Phone: 847.677.8170 or click
Photos: Barbara Keer