Marie Selby Botanical Gardens, Sarasota

4.5 out of 5 stars 9 Reviews

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  • Bird at a Pond (Marie Selby Botanical Gardens)
    Bird at a Pond (Marie Selby Botanical...
    by charlenemixa
  • Massive tree in the gardens
    Massive tree in the gardens
    by charlenemixa
  • Orchids are everywhere!
    Orchids are everywhere!
    by charlenemixa
  • charlenemixa's Profile Photo

    A Tropical Paradise Marie Selby Botanical Gardens

    by charlenemixa Written Jun 6, 2014
    Orchids are everywhere!
    3 more images

    The Marie Selby Botanical Gardens, the former grounds of the historic Selby estate, is located on the edge of downtown and Sarasota Bay. Starting with the short movie, we learn that Selby Gardens specializes in tropical plants, especially epiphytes (plants that grow on other plants). The Gardens boasts a living collection of more than 6,000 orchids! Comprised of 9.5-acre prime Bayfront property the gardens is a walking, open-air and under-glass museum of over 20,000 colorful plants. Taking our handy map we begin our walk through the many distinct garden areas starting with the Tropical Display House. Gorgeous orchids and unique tropical plants such as the “pitcher plant” are found in a lush rain forest atmosphere. We wander through the Bamboo Pavilion, Banyan Grove, Cactus and Succulent Garden and Cycad Collection fascinated by this remarkable tropical garden. As the path winds along the edge of Sarasota Bay we delight in the intriguing vistas of the glimmering bay. Strolling through the former Christy Payne Mansion we admire the Southern Colonial architecture and the botanical art and photography exhibits.

    Visitors must allow ample time to wander the gardens to enjoy the essence of all it offers. The gift shop has great gardening items as well as orchids and tropical plants.

    Related to:
    • Museum Visits
    • Historical Travel

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  • milan2003's Profile Photo

    Marie Selby Botanical Gardens - Beautiful and lush

    by milan2003 Written Feb 20, 2012

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Love it!

    This was my 3rd trip to Marie Selby. It's a lovely, lovely place - respite against the heat (although not too much of that in Feb in Sarasota lately!), and great to walk around. It has an amazing collection of orchids and tons of epiphytes. It's completely lush and available to all - wonderful for going solo, in a couple, with elderly people as well as with kids.

    Call in advance to see when their daily tours are going - by volunteers, they give lots of information while going through one part of the garden. There's a cafe on site where you can get coffee and sandwiches, etc...with chairs outside - very charming. Or, like I did in my 2nd visit, we brought a picnic, ate it there, bought coffee and had a great time. They have huge banyan trees that kids can play within its roots, a nice canopy, brief walk along the mangroves, a tea house...very doable to see everything depending on your time...or the level of detail you like. A great lady's gift to Sarasota.

    Whether you just enjoy walking or running around gardens for the beauty, or love the research and education aspects - this garden has it all - and is a world renowned for certain plants and research. There's parking on site - and location is very easy to find. Enjoy!

    1-2 hours just walking around
    2-3 hours if you want to stop for lunch and chill.

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    Marie Selby Botanical Gardens

    by easterntrekker Written Sep 24, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Being a plant fanatic I was pretty excited about this garden . The plant collection is pretty amazing . This was once the private garden of Marie Selby who together with her husband lived on the property from 1920 to 1971. She had a love of nature and appreciated her beautiful surroundings .She actually formed the first garden club in Sarasota. The contents of Marie Selby's will revealed her wish to leave her property to the community as a botanical garden "for the enjoyment of the general public."
    The Gardens maintains a plant collection numbering more than 20,000 greenhouse plants, plus thousands more in the outdoor gardens. It is well know for its incredibe orchad collection.

    Selby Gardens is open every day except Christmas from
    10 a.m. to 5 p.m. On Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve the Gardens close at 3:00 p.m.

    Adults $17, Children 6-11 $6,
    Members Free.

    Related to:
    • Women's Travel
    • Seniors
    • Eco-Tourism

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  • tampa_shawn's Profile Photo

    Marie Selby Botanical Gardens

    by tampa_shawn Updated Nov 15, 2007

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    4 more images

    Wonderful waterfront gardens and grounds that are very well maintained. My favorite areas include the orchid house - the orchids are amazing and they had quite a few exotics that I had never seen before. I also really enjoyed the mangrove area and the mansion.

    The gift shop is also amazing. They have a large Garden shop that features many of the orchids and other plants that are on display in the gardens.

    Oh and there is the Koi pond, banyan grove, canopy walkways, succulent and wild flower gardens, palm grove, fragrance gardens, bamboo forest….

    Oh heck it was all good - plan on spending about 2 - 3 hours there

    On my last visit I took tons of pictures of the grounds. The center is also a respected center of tropical plant research and education.

    Selby Gardens is open every day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., except Christmas.

    Adults $12, Children 6-11 $6, Members Free.

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  • HumblyServingChrist's Profile Photo

    Be sure to see the Selby Botanical Gardens

    by HumblyServingChrist Written Jun 3, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Sarasota Skyline from the Selby Gardens

    Located along the bayfront at the edge of Downtown is a tranquil botanical gardens that is definately worth a visit. See the towering stalks of bamboo and listen as they clang together in song. Watch for brilliantly colored butterflies. Meander on the boardwalk through beautiful flowering plants and trees. Enjoy giant, whimsical ant statues. Marvel at the extensive root systems of giant hardwoods. Behold the largest collection of airplants. Take in one of the best views of the Sarasota skyline. Shop for interesting nature gifts. All of these activities and more await you at the Selby Botanical Gardens!

    Related to:
    • Eco-Tourism
    • Museum Visits
    • Romantic Travel and Honeymoons

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  • eugini2001's Profile Photo

    Marie Selby Botanical Gardens

    by eugini2001 Written May 17, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Selby Botanical Garden

    The collection of orchids & bromeliads at Marie Selby BG in downtown Sarasota has garnered hornors & recognition the world over. No wonder I was more than impressed.I have never seen an orange orchids,moreover all of them are huge! I almost bought one at their gift shop,but remembered my last perchase of this flower that had died in couple days,& changed my mind just in time.It was very hard to resist not to buy,they much cheaper & bigger than ones that are in Brooklyn shops.
    The view of the bay & bridge is breathtaken one! Lush floral,bamboo & palm gardens & lizards, small snakes are all around you!

    Related to:
    • Family Travel

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    Marie Salby Botanical Gardens ...

    by Tolik Written Aug 25, 2002

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Marie Salby Botanical Gardens is a “must see” for serious plant lovers, this peaceful place on the Sarasota Bay is said to be the only botanical garden in the world specializing in the preservation, study, and research of epiphytes; that is, “air plants” such as orchids.
    Botanical Gardens www.selby.org is home to more than 20,000 exotic plants, including more than 6,000 orchids, as well as bamboo grove, butterfly garden, fernery, tropical food gardens, the Payne Mansion, baywalk along the mangroves (a native shore-plant community), banyan grove and more…See more about the Garden in my Travelogue.

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    Marie Selby Botanical Gardens....

    by probation Written Aug 24, 2002

    0.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Marie Selby Botanical Gardens. The gardens occupy 8.5 bayfront acres with an open air and under glass museum of more than 20,000 colorful plants.
    The gardens also has a world famous collection of over 6,000 living orchids.

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  • easterntrekker's Profile Photo

    Rare trees at Selby Gardens

    by easterntrekker Written Sep 24, 2008

    3 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Moretown Bay Fig from Australia. I can only imagine how exciting this aquistion must have been for Marie Selby!!

    Related to:
    • Eco-Tourism
    • Hiking and Walking
    • Road Trip

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