PSBA - Who We Are

Puget Sound Bonsai Association 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. PSBA was formed in 1973.

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February 25 & 26: Workshop and General Meeting with Guest Artist Matt Reel 

We are pleased to announce Matt Reel as our guest artist for the February 26th general meeting! Our meeting will take place from 7:00pm to approximately 9:30pm on Monday February 26th at the UW Center for Urban Horticulture. Matt will be presenting a demonstration on repotting techniques. Repotting is a fundamental aspect of bonsai and key to ensuring healthy trees, yet it's very rarely taught or demonstrated. We will rectify this by having Matt repot a tree in front of us and address everything from soil mixtures to pot selection. Matt will also be conducting a hands-on workshop the day prior (Sunday February 25) for a limited number of participants. Please scroll down for details and book your spot ASAP before it sells out!

Many of us will remember Matt as one of our headliners at the last PNBCA convention held in Olympia, WA in the fall of 2016. He began his bonsai journey at just 14 years of age in Portland, Oregon. After finishing high school, Matt moved to Japan to begin a formal apprenticeship with Shinji Suzuki in Obuse, Nagano Prefecture, Japan. Mr. Suzuki was the last apprentice of master Motosuke Hamano of Touju-en nursery in Omiya and is now widely regarded as one of the top three of four bonsai artists in the world. He holds more Prime Minister awards than anyone else and is profoundly respected among his fellow professionals. Matt's full-time apprenticeship lasted a staggering eight years, during which he wired and styled many trees for the Kokufu-ten and Taikan-ten, the two most prestigious shows in the world.

Matt returned from Japan in 2014 to begin his professional career and joined the Portland Bonsai Village. His is known for his broad expertise in a wide range of conifers and deciduous trees, as well as his knowledge of bonsai display, especially in a tokonoma setting. Matt’s highly refined styling of trees has gained worldwide attention and made him in very high demand as a presenter and as a caretaker of bonsai collections for serious aficionados. He travels around the country and the world teaching workshops, performing demonstrations, and styling trees for private and public collections. He has been a headliner at Generation Bonsai in Germany and Brussels' Bonsai Rendezvous and will be headlining at Gateway to Bonsai and the MABS Spring Bonsai Festival this year, among others. We are very pleased to have him visit us!

To see some of Matt's work, you can visit his website at:
Or his blog at:  

Matt will conduct a workshop for a maximum of eight participants on Sunday February 25th at Bonsai Northwest in Tukwila. This is an excellent opportunity for personalized, hands-on instruction from a master. The workshop will run from 11:30am-3:30pm. Participants are expected to bring a mature, vigorous tree with good potential (bring a second tree in case there is only minimal work to be done on your first choice), bonsai tools and wire. Bonsai Northwest has a wide selection of trees available if you wish to purchase one for the workshop. The cost per participant is $75. Silent observers are welcome at a cost of $15. This is a great opportunity for those new (or not so new) to bonsai to pay a small price to learn by observing. If you elect to participate, please be on time so the workshop is not disrupted. If you are interested in participating, please contact our workshop coordinator, Lynn. Payment by credit card is available, just ask Lynn.



Mike Pistello Demonstration on a Juniper at the November General Meeting

Here's a photo of Mike, his demo Juniper and the winner of the tree as raffle prize. Thanks, Mike, for the wonderful demonstration.

At the meeting, our annual business meeting, we voted in Josef Leibfried as PSBA President, Tony Fajarillo as Vice President, a new treasurer and three new board members. Thanks to all for your commitment!

And, a special thanks to Edd Kuehn our new past President for all your hard work over the last two years!


Nov. 26th & 27th - Guest Artist Mike Pistello Puts on a Workshop and Demonstration

We are pleased to announce Mike Pistello as our guest artist for the November 27th general meeting.

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PSBA 2018 Membership Dues Are Due Before January 1st

PSBA members are reminded that 2018 dues are due by December 31st, 2017. 

For the first time in many years, dues have been increased to $50 per individual and $70 per couple/family.  By renewing prior to December 31st, save $10 and pay only $40 per individual or $60 per couple/family. 
The dues increase was discussed and approved by the entire board, with the following in mind:

- Rental rates at the Center for Urban Horticulture have increased 78% since 2015. 

- Travel costs and fees have increased for guest artists. 

- Aki Matsuri has been replaced by Japan Fair, which offers excellent exposure but at increased cost, with no opportunity for paid workshops or tree sales.

- Membership dues cover less than 50% of our operating costs, with the remainder coming from our annual auction and miscellaneous revenue such as raffles. 

The board works hard to control costs and balance the annual operating budget. VP Josef Leibfried has looked at alternative venues but so far has not found the same combination of accessibility, parking, facilities and staff support offered by CUH.  Josef has worked to contain cost increases by targeting West Coast artists where possible and re-introducing a "member roundtable" format for at least one meeting per year. Lynn Paietta's campaign to increase participation in guest-artist workshops has helped offset workshop costs.

Meanwhile, the board continues working for the future. 2017 saw the reinvention of the Spring Show under the leadership of Kyle Funakoshi. With the help of Edd Kuehn, Tony Fajarillo and Mark Epping-Jordan, we have invested in new exhibit stands that are easier to handle and will be reused over and over again at future events. The annual auction chaired by Aaron Pollock maintained its upward revenue trend. Thanks to the financial success of the 2016 PSBA Convention led by Linda Breeden and Doug Bradley, PSBA has for the first time established a convention savings account to grubstake our next major event. 

Be a part of our ongoing success by renewing your membership. Cash and check payments will be accepted at the upcoming General Meeting Monday November 27th. Or, renew online today. Click on the Join/Renew tab, and follow the prompts through our simple and secure payment system.

Thank you for your support of PSBA!


In Memoriam Glenn Gardner

Past PSBA President Glenn Gardner passed away in early August 2017 following an accidental fall. He was 88.

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