Our Story

Jim & Cathy Piala first opened the doors at Piala’s Nursery & Garden Shop, Inc. in April of 1978. Prior to opening the business, Jim had received a BS degree from Loyola University in Chicago, along with a commission as a Second Lieutenant in the U.S. Army.

During high school and college, Jim worked for multiple nurseries and garden shops in Illinois. After a stint with the Army’s 8th Special Forces in Central America and leaving the Army as a Captain, Jim worked for four and a half years at a consulting firm and then worked in Environmental Studies with Wisconsin Electric.

Jim and Cathy wanted to share their mutual enjoyment of the outdoors and a desire to enhance the environment. They were very proud to hand over the reins to their son and daughter-in-law, as their business moved into its second generation of family ownership.
Quinn spent his whole life in and around the nursery, leaving only to pursue his Bachelor’s degree in Landscape Architecture from Ohio State University. Even during his college years, he often commuted back and forth on the weekends and over school breaks to continue working and growing the landscape division of the company. It came as no surprise when he married Amanda (another Landscape Architect!), and the two of them have been working together to further grow the landscape design/build company, and the nursery as a whole.