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The Puget Sound Bonsai Association was formed in 1973 and is a non-profit corporation dedicated to the education of its members and the general public in the art and culture of bonsai. Club members have bonsai experience that ranges from beginner to recognized experts in the art. PSBA holds regularly scheduled club meetings featuring demonstrations and educational programs by national and international bonsai artists. The club also stages public shows and participates in community events where members' trees are showcased. 


June 26 & 27, 2016 - Bob Shimon Workshop and Demonstration

We are pleased to announce Bob Shimon as our guest artist for the June 27th general meeting! Bob will also be conducting a workshop the day before our meeting (Sunday June 26th) at Bonsai Northwest from 12-4pm. To take part in this excellent hands-on learning opportunity, please contact workshop chair Lynn Paietta. Bob will have several of his nationally recognized yamadori (collected from the wild) redwoods available for purchase to use in the workshop. 

Bob Shimon first became interested in bonsai in the mid 60s while attending college and used the famed book Bonsai: Culture and Care of Miniature Trees as his guide. The 1965 title, written by the Sunset Editorial Staff, figured prominently in the early careers of those who comprised the first generation of American bonsai artists. 

In 1968, Bob was drafted into the United States Armed Forces and his newfound hobby was largely forgotten. Seventeen years later, Bob encountered a poster at a nursery advertising the Redwood Empire Bonsai Society in Santa Rosa, California. Bob joined the club and has been a member ever since. The late Mas Imazumi served as club sensei (respected, veteran teacher) for the REBS and acted as Bob's first teacher. Since then, Bob has worked with distinguished artists from across the country and around the world. Notable examples include Yasuo Mitsuya, Harunobu Tokita, and Junchiro Tanaka, as well as celebrated Western professionals Kathy Shaner, Marco Invernizzi and Peter Tea. Since 2010, Bob has also been working with Ryan Neil, with a particular emphasis on yamadori Sierra junipers. 

In 2012, one of his redwoods won the Finest North American Native Species Bonsai award at the third U.S. National Bonsai Exhibition in Rochester, NY [photo below]. Just two years later, another one of Bob's redwoods was selected for the prestigious Artisans Cup exhibition in Portland, OR. Since 1997, Bob and his son Zack have operated Mendocino Coast Bonsai near the town of Point Arena, CA. They specialize in collected redwoods, but also work with other California natives like pygmy cypress, live oak, and Sierra juniper. To see examples of Bob's and Zack's collected redwoods, please visit 

Come see Bob in action on Monday June 27th from 7-9pm at the UW Center for Urban Horticulture! 

[photo courtesy of Kusamura Bonsai Club] 

[photo courtesy of Medocino Coast Bonsai]


2016 PNBCA Bonsai Convention - Olympia, WA - October 13-16, 2016

Convention Featured Artist: Boon Manakitivipart

One small juniper started Boon on his journey and would end up having a huge impact on his life. Becoming fascinated with bonsai, Boon joined the Bonsai Society of San Francisco and studied with as many teachers as he could find in California, including bonsai master Akio Kondo, first apprentice of award-winning bonsai master Kihachiro Kamiya. Later, Boon would himself apprentice to master Kamiya, as well as working and studying at famous Japanese bonsai nursery Kihachi-En. In April 2000 Boon (the only non-Japanese contestant) won the Grand Prize in Japan’s Kindai Bonsai Styling Contest. He has since won numerous other national and international awards and recognition for his work. Boon is the founder and Sensei (primary teacher) of Bay Island Bonsai, and has had his own business, Bonsai Boon, since 1998.

Boon will offer several workshops and critiques at the convention. Register now!



Top Ten Reasons to Attend the PNBCA Convention in Olympia!

For the benefit of newcomers and undecideds, we polled some convention loyalists for the inside scoop on why you should absolutely earmark a few days and a few hundred bucks to attend this year’s PNBCA Bonsai Convention in Olympia, October 13-16, 2016.

1.   Guest artist workshops. A total of 14 workshops with eight priced at $100 or less. Guest artists from out of state and even a visiting artist from Japan.

All of the following are included in the $255 cost of registration (workshops and hotel additional).

2.   Demos and lectures.  Multiple demos, lectures and critiques each day.

3.   Vendor Marketplace.  A wealth of bonsai-related materials for sale, often with special convention discounts.

4.   Bonsai displays.  Some of the best trees from our region and beyond.

5.   Raffles.  "I got my favorite tree at my very first convention in a raffle."

6.   Auctions.  Another chance to obtain great trees and bonsai items.

7.   Kindred spirits.  Connect with people you already know and make new friends and connections.

8.   Olympia.  An easy road trip to a great little city ideally placed for access from all points of the compass.  Bring your honey and make it a getaway.

9.   Great food that you don't have to cook.  Enjoy breakfast and dinner with some of your new favorite bonsai people.

10.  Support PSBA.  The convention represents a substantial investment of time and money by PSBA, your local club. Show your support by participating in the convention.

The PNBCA convention moves around the region and is now a biennial event, so it likely won’t be back in the Puget Sound area for years to come. This is your chance! Gather up some bonsai buddies, come out to enjoy the convention and support your club. Don’t delay – sign up today!


2016 PNBCA Bonsai Convention - Olympia, WA - October 13-16, 2016

Featured artist: Suthin Sukosolvisit 

Born in Thailand, Suthin has been involved in Bonsai since 1970. His bonsai are known for their proportion, refinement and detail. With extensive experience with tropical bonsai, Suthin’s expertise also includes Japanese maples, black pines and juniper, as well as many other species. Shohin and root-over-rock are among his favorite styles. Winner of several International Bonsai Awards, Suthin teaches his bonsai techniques throughout New England and the United States. With his wife, Suthin operates the Royal Bonsai Garden in Stoughton, Massachusetts

Suthin will offer several workshops and critiques at the convention. Register now! Remember, workshop priority goes to Early Bird Full registrants and then to other Full registrants.


Why Olympia? How the PNBCA annual convention landed in the South Sound area

Wondering how convention co-chairs Linda Breeden and Douglas Bradley came to pick Olympia as the host city for the 2016 PNBCA convention? Just check out a recent feature in AAA Washington’s Journeys magazine:

Author Haley Shapley calls Olympia “a central gathering place”. Midway between Seattle and Portland, Washington’s state capital is conveniently placed, accessible, and charming. This “All-American City” boasts a restored waterfront, active downtown, immediate access to nature, and superior shopping – all at reasonable small-city prices. The newly-renovated Red Lion Hotel offers affordable luxury and copious parking, overlooking Capitol Lake within easy reach of downtown.

Contact the Red Lion Hotel now to book your convention stay at a great low rate!


June 4, 2016 - 11th Annual PSBA Bonsai Tree and Suiseki Auction

Please keep your calendar open for the 11th ANNUAL PSBA BONSAI TREE AND SUISEKI AUCTION~~SATURDAY JUNE 4, 2016. 

PSBA's 11th annual auction will again be held at the Pacific Bonsai Museum in Federal Way Saturday, June 4 from noon to about 4 pm.  We will need lots of helpful volunteers to make this happen.


New this year:

This year there will be a $5.00 fee per bidder/seller paddle.

All proceeds from the paddle fee will go to help support the Pacific Bonsai Museum, and the care of the beautiful trees in their collection.

Planning Information:

  1. 1. For the Silent Auction. Please consider making a donation of a bonsai related items to the club for inclusion in the silent auction and all sales proceeds will be donated to the club. Alternatively, you may also submit items to the silent auction with 10% of the proceeds going to PSBA as a donation. There will be no charge for reserves that are not met in the silent auction, however, we are limiting silent auction reserves to less than $100 per item.

If you have silent auction items, you can bring them on the day of the auction, but please arrive early, you will need to fill out an auction slip for each of your items with a description of the item, the reserve price if applicable (minimum bid), buy-it-now price if applicable, and seller id (paddle number) and give to the silent auction intake person.

  1. 2.  For the Live Auction. We need about 70 trees and no more than 5 viewing stones for the live auction. This year we are accepting no more than 5 items per club member for the live auction. Please note that 10% of the final auction price will be retained by the club as a donation. This is much lower than most auctions. Again, while you may set a reserve price for your tree, you will need to make a $15 donation to the club if your tree or stone does not meet the reserve price.

Those of you who wish to submit trees for the live auction may do so by e-mailing Jason Eider at (

Please also submit photos of your item with a short description of the tree, including any outstanding characteristics, such as age, where collected, how long in bonsai training, pot, etc. Please do so before May 15th.  Please note that the live auction may fill up before May 15th, so provide early notice to ensure inclusion of your trees in the live auction.

You can contact Jason @ with any questions.


2016 PNBCA Bonsai Convention - Olympia, WA - October 13-16, 2016

Featured artist: Daisaku Nomoto

We are thrilled to welcome Japanese bonsai artist Daisaku Nomoto on his first visit to the Pacific Northwest.  From Miyazaki City, on the Southern island of Kushu, Japan, Daisaku-san comes from a bonsai family. After only four years’ apprenticeship with bonsai master Kihachiro Kamiya, Daisaku had a client’s white pine accepted into Koku-Fu, the most important bonsai show in the world. He then went on to win the prestigious Koku-Fu Prize in 2004 with a Japanese Black Pine. In 2005, Daisaku opened his own bonsai garden Nomoto Chinshoen and now works with private clients and bonsai customers, and exhibits in premier bonsai shows throughout Japan.

For more on Daisaku’s work, see Jonas Dupuich excellent blog:

To catch Daisaku and others, register now at the convention website.   Remember, workshop priority goes to Early Bird Full registrants and then to other Full registrants. 


Stone collecting trip

Mid-October is peak leaf season in the Puget Sound region. With rivers at low levels before the rains, it’s a great time to play rock hound for a day. Get out there in the beautiful Northwest scenery and search for suiseki amid the dizzying variety of stones carried downriver by last winter’s storms. The Puget Sound Bonsai Association Viewing Stone Interest Group will host this one-of-a-kind stone hunting expedition. Find out more at the convention website.

Early Bird Deadline approaches

The early bird deadline for convention registration is only 2 weeks away (June 1, 2016) and our guest artist workshops are beginning to fill up. Don’t delay, register now to be sure of a workshop spot. Remember, workshop priority goes to Early Bird Full registrants and then to other Full registrants. Early birds also get a free convention tote bag ($20 value).