Boise Bonsai Society
A non-profit organization dedicated to educating our members and the general public in the art and culture of bonsai in the Treasure Valley, since 1996.


Happy 20th Anniversary to the Boise Bonsai Society!
- Thanks to all our members and elected officials for making this a 1st-Class Bonsai Society!

* Calendar Update: Botanical Garden Show has been moved to 27 AUG; 15 SEP has been changed to a monthly meeting - details on that meeting will be sent out in AUG: 'Calendar of Events'.

* This year marks the 20th Anniversary of the Boise Bonsai Society! The BBS was started in 1995 with 11 original members, becoming official with elected officers in 1996, with 'Bonsai Bob' Legget as Sensei.

In Memory of Mr. Orville Cope: Sadly, Orv Cope passed away on April 25th. Orv was a long time member and a great joy to know. We always appreciated his vision of Bonsai and how it related to Zen. He had such a great sense of humor and kindness. This is a sad time for the club with the loss of a great member. His obituary is online at Summers Funeral Home. Memorial services were held on 22 May. We miss you Orv! - BBS
Next Event!
Annual Bonsai & Koi Show at the Idaho Botanical Garden. Free to the public 10:00am-4:00pm!
27 AUG; 8:30am (move-in)
Bring your Bonsai for show! Free to the public 10:00am-4:00pm!
Location: Idaho Botanical Garden (IBG)

Coming Up:
Monthly BBS Meeting
15 SEP; 6pm
Styling Tips. Bring trees for help or show!
Location: Farwest Nursery
Main BBS Splash Image
Seasonal Tips
Late Summer
  • Water often and deeply.
  • Fertilize with 5-10-10 or 0-10-10.
  • Scrub trunks of elm, birch and zelkova with diluted lime sulfur.
  • Protect trees from afternoon sun.
  • Prune to avoid die-back. If you cannot see through the foliage, prune to allow sun light into inner branches.
  • Cut pine needles in half to promote secondary budding.

The Boise Bonsai Society (BBS) is a group of dedicated bonsai enthusiasts from the greater Boise, Idaho area. Our goal is to educate both our members and the general public in the art form known as 'Bonsai' (pronounced 'bone-sigh'), the ancient Asian art of growing miniature trees in pots. Our club holds bonsai workshops, collecting trips, and annual shows throughout the year. All levels of ability are welcome!

A Bonsai Educational Experience for All

Our Boise Bonsai Society is Famous! - Recent Interview by KTVB Channel 7:
* News Media Coverage: The Boise Bonsai Society leadership was recently interviewed by KTVB, NewsChannel 7, and aired 26-28 May on "You can grow it with Jim Duthie". You can watch the full segment by selecting the video image below and waiting for the advertisement to complete.
Our BBS is Famous! - Interview by Channel 7, aired 26 May 2016

Most Recent Meeting Murmurings

21 July 2016 Meeting:
Topics discussed:
  • Fertilizer Cake: Recipe & instructions can be found on the High Desert Bonsai website.
  • Care Sheets: Seasonal Care Guidance can be found on our website on the Care page, and Species-specific Care Sheets are available through High Desert Bonsai.
  • Fish Emulsion: Apply about every 4 days.
  • Soil Density: Watch for packed soils that do not allow thorough watering - aerate with chopsticks as neeeded.
  • Zamzows Thrive: Recommended to be used in early spring, about the 1st week of February.
  • Differences between juvenile and mature growth on Junipers.
  • Demonstration of sacrifice-branch growth and long-term styling.
  • Demonstration of care and watering environment.
  • Individual tree styling guidance and advice.
16 June 2016 Meeting:

Recommended Articles/Videos


Vocabulary Reference

  • Bonsai: (Pronounced 'bone-sigh') The art of growing trees in trays or pots. Derived from 'bon', meaning 'tray' and 'sai', meaning 'tree' (Pessey & Samson, 1992, "Bonsai Basics", p16).
  • Besaki: Beautiful Stone; used in formal display. Viewing Stones offer a story and serve as companions to the Bonsai in formal display.
  • Kusamono: Companion Plant; used in formal display.
  • Nebari: Exposed surface roots, located at the base of the tree.
  • Ramification: The training and development of secondary branch structure from the main branches by regular pruning, encouraging thick foliage and pad-development.
  • Schefflera: The 'Indestructable Bonsa'. A popular in-door/tropical species of tree used in Bonsai. 'Dwarf' variety of the full-sized Brassaia.
  • Suiseki: Companion Stone; used in formal display. Note, the word 'stone' is used in Bonsai terminology; not 'rock'.
  • Yamadori: Wild trees collected for training as Bonsai.
Other Vocabulary Resources:
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