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Group Critique Session: 7:30 – 9:00 Pm

Bring us your tired, your poorly pruned, your muddled masses of branches yearning to grow free (with apologies to Emma Lazarus, whose REAL quote about welcoming the masses appears on the Statue of Liberty.). Do you have a tree you are not quite sure what to do with style-wise? Or one that is not as happy as it should be living in beautiful Southern California? Then bring it to our next monthly meeting for advise. These occasional group critiques are a lot of fun and can offer you solutions you never thought of. Meet and greet begins at 7 p.m., the meeting at 7:30. See you all there!

President’s Message

Our show in the new venue at the Lutheran Church was a remarkable success! Lots of very nice trees were exhibited, the trees-in-training exhibit and demos generated good interest, and the plant sale, as well as Ron Bereman, our vendor (a first for the club), were always busy. We even made a little bit of money.  A record number of people signed up for the Bonsai Basics Workshop. A big Thank You to all of you who helped in so many ways, but there are two people deserve special thanks: Ernie Witham for the attractive advertisements and press releases published in the Independent and the Santa Barbara News-Press, and press releases in a couple of other local publications. Many people said they came because of something they saw in print, especially in the Independent. Carol Hicks also deserves our gratitude for the many ways she helped, but especially for her successful last minute frantic shopping expedition for table covers when, at about 10:15 AM, we discovered that we didn’t have covers for four tables and the show was scheduled to open to the public at 11:00 AM. It wasn’t easy, but she got the covers and we did get set up in the nick of time.     Joe

View our May 2018 Show


June 2 – September 30, Santa Cruz, California

Clark Bonsai Collection: “Going Native” a bonsai exhibition at the Clark Bonsai Collection in Shinzen Friendship Gardens, Woodward Park. Exhibition lecture by Curator Bob Hilvers on June 9 at 10 AM. Join us and marvel at desert Junipers over a thousand years old or an ancient Live Oak known as the Del Monte ogre. Gaze in wonder at a Pygmy Cypress that displays the very image of a coastal monarch yet is only 30 inches tall. See the rarest of the rare, a Monterey Pine bonsai. These and other wonders of the art of bonsai will be on display. Visit us at for more information.

June 16-17, Livermore, California

Valley Bonsai Society: 10th annual show at Alden Lane Nursery, 981 Alden Lane. Show hours are 10 AM to 4 PM with a demonstration at 1PM on both days. The finished tree will be raffled off at the end of the demonstrations. Bonsai pots, soil, etc. available for purchase. Admission is free.

Member’s Corner: Bonsai­­­—read All About It!

Susanne Barrymore is our Club Librarian and wants to remind members that we have an extensive library. Members are welcome to sign out any book at no charge, returning it at the next meeting. Here is a recommendation from Susanne: “One book in the library, is one which I bought for myself also 1974, and struck me as being worthy of a PhD degree.  It is “The Japanese Art of Miniature Trees and Landscapes, by Yuji Yoshimura and Giovanna M. Halford.  I learned later that much of the work was by Halford, and when you study the book you will see why it warrants the evaluation of a PhD thesis.  I was astounded at the amount of work it represented, assembling all that information so systematically for bonsai artists to use. The introductory text, all in English, is worth reading.  If you have felt yourself frustrated with not finding English translations for the tree, with pictures of trees, this book has an amazing reference section.  In Appendix 3 there are listed explanations and symbols for many species on which you may desire information.  It is sometimes confusing where to look up information on a particular species.  In appendix 4 you look up the plant by English or scientific name, and the number they provide is for where to find it in appendix 3.  At the beginning of Appendix 3 is a list of all the explanations and symbols you will find applying to the species. If you have a Japanese red pine, you will find in #4, that its Japanese name is Aka-matsu, followed by the calligraphy, then the name in English, the scientific name, the type of plant it is, time to repot, time to trim, when to wire, location in regard to sun, pests to watch for, and some other specific ideas for the species.”

More Photos From Our May Show And Sale: The Set-up