Southwest Florida’s premiere bonsai exhibit is proudly sponsored and maintained by the Sho Fu Bonsai Society of Sarasota, Inc. This project was started in 2007, and after months of negotiation and planning with Selby Botanical Garden, and after months of fundraising efforts by the members of Sho Fu, the Permanent Bonsai Exhibit at Selby Gardens was opened in the spring of 2009. In the intervening years thousands and thousands of people have enjoyed this beautiful presentation of tropical bonsai trees. Selby Gardens (considered one of the top 10 botanical gardens in the US), provides the perfect venue for this small, but impressive display. Sho Fu volunteers maintain the exhibit, and Selby Garden’s support staff help the volunteers to care for and protect the trees. One special volunteer is the curator of the exhibit, Richard Dietrich, a Sho Fu member, who dedicates hundreds of hours each year to the care and nurturing of the trees on the exhibit.
The trees that make up this exhibit came through a combination of donations from members, as well as from noted bonsai artists such as Erik Wigert, Mary Madison, Hal Mahoney, Ernie Fernandez, Alan Carver, Dorothy Schmitz, and Jim Smith. Sho Fu is constantly upgrading and adding to the exhibit to assure returning visitors new and exciting bonsai.
Selby Gardens hosts over 140,000 visitors each year, and Sho Fu is proud to be able to share our exhibit, and introduce so many people to the world of bonsai.