Bay Island Bonsai is an open club. No invitation needed. To apply, just fill out the information requested below.

To get the most out of their training, Bay Island Bonsai members participate in club meetings, take at least nine half-day workshops a year, and participate and help with Bay Island Bonsai events, especially the annual Bonsai Exhibit.

If you want to join Bay Island Bonsai, please read this whole page and go to the bottom for your information requested from Bay Island Bonsai.

Bay Island Bonsai is open to everyone – beginners and experienced alike. Member rate for workshop is $50 per half day workshop. Due do availability-demands for work shops. Work shops are, for the time being, limited to Bay Island Bonsai members.

Annual fees for Bay Island Bonsai are $45.

* Annual fee will be $50 / year start in 2018

If you are interested in becoming a member of Bay Island Bonsai, call Boon at 510-919-5042

Bay Island Bonsai Workshops

Workshops are designed for members to learn how to develop and maintain high quality bonsai. By working on their own trees, members quickly learn how to style, develop and maintain their bonsai through the guided practice of bonsai techniques including wiring, repotting, styling, carving, seasonal cutback, and decandling. The goal is for members to learn how to prepare their trees for public display.

Bay Island Bonsai offers morning and afternoon workshops on selected weekdays and weekends throughout the year. Workshop times are: 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. (see calendar for upcoming dates). You can sign up for workshops by phoning Boon at 510-919-5042 or by signing up at a Bay Island Bonsai monthly meeting.

What To Bring To Workshops

Tools, wire, one or more trees, and a sunny disposition are required for all Bay Island Bonsai workshops. A basic bonsai tool-kit includes: concave cutter, scissors, wire-cutter, and pliers. Bring repotting tools if you plan to repot; bring copper or aluminum wire if you plan to do any wiring.

Deciding what tree or trees to bring depends on your collection and the season. The Bay Island Bonsai newsletter offers some advice–you can also ask Boon or BIB Advisory Board members for further suggestions.


Workshop Policy

Members are required to participate in at least nine half-day workshops a year. There is no charge for reserving a workshop space if you cancel one week before the start of the workshop. Workshops that have 2 or fewer participants may be cancelled. Participants of cancelled workshops will be notified one week before scheduled workshop date.

Monthly Club Meeting

Bay Island Bonsai’s monthly meetings are an opportunity for the whole membership to gather and learn about bonsai. Whereas workshops provide the opportunity to practice bonsai technique, monthly meetings provide BIB members with the theory.

Using trees from his own collection as examples, Boon discusses topics including wiring basics, varietal care, and pine theory, at each meeting. Members study and practice bonsai evaluation throughout the year by learning the special characteristics of different varieties and by judging trees of similar and different species on a regular basis.

But what makes Bay Island Bonsai unique is its instruction on display. Each month a different member brings trees, stands, and accent plants from his or her collection and sets up a formal display. With support from the general membership, the displaying member adjusts elements of the display to learn which combination or combinations of elements work best. It is through this practice that members prepare for staging Bay Island Bonsai’s annual show, An Exhibit of Fine Bonsai.

Club meetings have now been changed to first or second Monday of the month. . See calendar page for dates

How Do I Get Started?

If you are interested in joining Bay Island Bonsai, send an email to (boon at bonsaiboon dot com) with the following information:

  • First and last name
  • Address
  • Phone number
  • Email address
  • How long have you been in Bonsai (beginners and all levels accepted)
  • What kind of bonsai interests you? (No wrong answers here. B.I.B. wants to see you succeed as and amateur or professional bonsai artist.)

Please write or call Boon if you have any questions about becoming a member.