Midwest Bonsai Society 13th Annual May Bonsai Exhibit

May 20-21, 2017 - 9AM to 5PM


A newer tradition for the Midwest Bonsai Society is the May Bonsai Exhibit.  Started in 2004, the show is smaller than the August Bonsai Exhibition but is well worth the trip to view the displays of trees.  The Garden Bonsai trees will be displayed in the two courtyards.  Vendors will offer an amazing selection of trees, accent plants, pots, stands, tools and Bonsai books and literature.  There will also be workshops, including a children’s workshop, and bonsai demonstrations.

The May Exhibit is held in the Burnstein Hall of the Regenstein Center at the Chicago Botanic Garden (map below).  The theme of the show is education.  Members are invited to bring trees in various stages of training, accompanied by explanations of what processes are being used.

There is no fee to attend, but regular parking rates apply for entry into the Chicago Botanic Garden.

Visitors can take advantage of hotel discounts arranged by the Chicago Botanic Garden.  When making reservations tell the hotel you are in town to attend an event at the Garden. Suggested hotel accommodations can be found at the Chicago Botanic Garden's website.



All workshops are $50.00 (except the Children’s Workshop for which there is only a fee of $10.00).  Materials fees are paid to the vendor at the time of the workshop.


American Bonsai Society

Dan Turner will host the ABS Book table featuring books and educational materials. www.absbonsai.org

Asian Artiques

Kristy Majeske from Hot Springs, AR will be joining us. She is bringing a selection of antique Japanese Scroll paintings and a selection of smaller scrolls suitable for display with Bonsai trees.


BC Bonsai

Local grower of Bonsai starter stock grown at their nursery. Grown without grafting they have both container and field grown trees. Linda Camp and Jim Beck teach classes and also offer Bonsai supplies. www.bcbonsai.com

Cass Bonsai

From Edwardsville, IL, the Cass brothers offer an excellent selection of Bonsai trees and supplies. They have been a constant presence at the Midwest Bonsai shows for many years. We are delighted to have them back. Brian is also a noted Bonsai artist.  www.cassbonsaigardens.com

Fred Tarnow Pottery

Fred is one two Midwest Bonsai members with displays at the May Exhibit. He offers his pottery for your pleasure. Fred is also an expert on Suiseki stones. Occasionally he can be persuaded to part with one his stones.

Karen Schuman Pottery

Karen is the second Midwest Bonsai member showing her work at the May Exhibit. She has been creating beautiful Bonsai pots of various sizes, shapes, textures and colors for many years. We just wish she had time to make a lot more pots.


Linda Ippel Studios

Linda Ipell of Grand Rapids Michigan makes her second appearance at our Exhibition. After years of making beautiful pottery Linda has decided to branch out into the world of Bonsai Pottery.

Stands and Stones

Returning to Chicago after showing their work here in 2015, Mark and Racie Rhyne offer a new selection of handmade stands and Suiseki and Biseki stones. Racie loves Netsuke size stones. Stands can be ordered in advance of the show if you know what you want. www.standsandstones.com

Wildwood Gardens

Welcome back again to Frank Mihalic from Chardon, OH. Frank and his father Tony have made Wildwood into a thriving Bonsai business. In addition to the amazing variety of Bonsai trees and accent plant offered he is also a gifted teacher. This year Frank is conducting Children’s Bonsai workshops on Sat. and Sun. afternoons. www.wildwoodgardens.com


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Tree Registration

The May Bonsai Exhibit is a non-judged show, centering around the theme of education and trees-in-development.  Tree registrants are invited to bring trees in various stages of training, accompanied by explanations of what processes are being used, pictures of tree progress, and any other materials that help explain the tree's development.

Trees can be brought to the Regenstein Center between 12:00 PM Noon and 7:00 PM on May 19th to register them for display in the show.  There is no cost for registration, which is open to all, with no membership or residency requirements.

Pre-registration of trees via our online form is now open!  Forms will be available during on-site tree registration.

Please make sure your trees are thoroughly watered before being registered for the show. Trees will be spot-watered only throughout the weekend.

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