The Missouri Botanical Garden is a botanical garden located in St. Louis, Missouri, and is also known informally as "Shaw's Garden" (named for founder Henry Shaw, a botanist and philanthropist).
Founded in 1859, the Missouri Botanical Garden is one of the oldest botanical institutions in the United States and a National Historic Landmark. The Garden is a center for botanical research and science education of international repute, as well as an oasis in the city of St. Louis, with 79 acres (31 hectares) of horticultural display. It includes a 14 acre (5 hectares) Japanese strolling garden named Seiwa-en, the Climatron geodesic dome conservatory, a children's garden including a pioneer village, a playground, a fountain area, and a water locking system, somewhat similar to the locking system at the Panama Canal, and Osage camp, and Henry Shaw’s original 1850 estate home. It is adjacent to Tower Grove Park, another of Shaw’s legacies.
The gardens have undergone many evolutions in the past 25 years under Dr. Peter Raven, the Garden's director and chief executive. The 2003 annual report lists more than 100 individuals under research, a third of them with PhDs.
Every year the Garden is a place for many cultural festivals including the Japanese Festival and the Chinese Culture Days by the St. Louis Chinese Culture Days Committee. During this time, there are showcases of the culture's botanics as well as cultural arts, crafts, music and food. The Japanese Festival recently began to include sumo wrestling, adding this sport to the taiko drumming and kimono fashion shows already presented. The Garden is known for its Bonsai growing, which can be seen all year round, but is highlighted during the multiple Asian festivals. Major garden features include: