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Photo by Sandy Steinbrecher

With a love of plants and the outdoors and an eye for design and detail, Ellen Moderhack has been designing and installing gardens since 1999. Originally focused solely on plant design, MODE now provides full service landscape design and installation for hardscape features such as patios, driveways, pathways and retention walls; and carpentry elements including pergolas, trellises and fences, and water features.
Ellen keeps herself, and MODE, on top of industry trends through on-going education, including seminars with world-renowned designers and suppliers of the latest in green technology, and through regular collaboration on joint projects with other landscape designers. Ellen finds inspiration just about everywhere, making it a point to travel both near and far to gather new ideas and techniques for designs and installations.
Ellen, husband Randy, and their two children have lived in a lovingly restored brick bungalow in Chicago’s Ravenswood Manor neighborhood since 1992. 

“Like my clients, I find great pleasure spending time in my garden—
working, relaxing, connecting with nature.”




City-Wide Winner-Gardener of the Year (Franklin Fine Arts Center) – Mayor Daley’s 2009 Landscape Awards
First Place-Schools Region 3 (Franklin Fine Arts Center) – Mayor Daley’s 2009 Landscape Awards
Third Place-Schools Region 4 (St. Thomas the Apostle Elementary School) – Mayor Daley’s 2009 Landscape Awards
Winner of the Park Ridge Beautification Award (Taylor-Duffy Residence)


First Place -- Illinois Landscape Contractors Association’s (ILCA) Landscape Design Contest




Midwest Ecological Landscaping Association (MELA)
Landscape Design Association (LDA)
Association of Professional Landscape Designers (APLD)


LOCAL Travel Pictures

Andersen Japanese Gardens, Rockford, IL

Bong Prairie, Southern WI


Olbrich Botanic Garden, Madison, WI