Austin Bonsai Society
Austin Bonsai Society

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For over a thousand years, the Japanese have practiced and refined the art form of creating living trees in miniature. “Bonsai,” the Japanese word meaning “tree in a tray,” has come to signify one of the most unique and interesting artistic activities ever conceived by man.

Contrary to popular belief, it was the Chinese who actually originated the bonsai art form. It is thought to date from the Han Dynasty, around 200 B.C. Much of the Japanese culture flowed from China, often through Korea. However, extensive adaptations have been made over time to make these borrowings uniquely Japanese.

No longer exclusively an oriental art form, today bonsai is practiced by thousands of people around the world, on every continent. Although the fundamentals of bonsai, as we practice it, are still firmly rooted in the Japanese tradition, the numbers and diversity of modern bonsai enthusiasts have begun to initiate subtle changes in the art which reflect the regions, nationalities, philosophies and plant materials available to those involved in this truly international hobby.

Bonsai is a blending of artistic ability with horticultural expertise. No two people will design exactly the same tree in the same sense that no two artists will paint exactly the same picture. Yet, behind the application of art form, the horticultural techniques of bud pinching, root pruning, trimming, fertilizing, watering, and other activities which hold the bonsai in its miniature form, follow generally time tested and honored routines.

Please fill out the membership form and email it to for processing.