Resources

On this page you’ll find a wide variety of resources for learning more about bonsai.  First of course we’ll point you to resources we’ve created.  These are the videos the Pittsburgh Bonsai Society has recorded of our educational content, presented at our meetings in person or at virtual meetings.  PBS member Bob Grealish has written a beginner’s guide to bonsai.

Local and National Bonsai Vendors

There are a few local bonsai vendors in and around Pittsburgh.

  • Bonsai In the Burgh: Member and former society president Bob Dietz runs Bonsai in the Burgh.  Call 724-348-4771 for all of your bonsai supplies, and he can bring them to a meeting or you can visit him in South Park.
  • Bebop Bonsai: Member and current society Vice President Ian Evans runs Bebop Bonsai, which is a provider of bonsai, bonsai pots, bonsai fertilizer, and specialty professional bonsai services including tree boarding, bonsai collection management, potting, pruning, and styling. Visit www.bebopbonsai.com or call 412-812-8506 to schedule an appointment.

There are many national and online bonsai vendors who can ship trees and supplies to you.  We list a few here that we have used, but this list is a small selection of what is available.

Bonsai Show Forms

These forms are used for our show and auction.

These forms are for the 2023 National Bonsai Show.

Bonsai on YouTube

There are untold YouTube videos about bonsai.  Where do you start?  Here is curated list of particularly useful videos we have found.  Any of these creators are a great source for other videos about bonsai.  Talk to other PBS members for their opinions on which ones might best fit you to get more in depth information about bonsai.

Ryan Neil

Ryan Neil is an American bonsai artist with a deep knowledge of the science and horticulture of bonsai and a focus on developing a dynamic American style of bonsai.  Ryan’s bonsai studio is called Bonsai Mirai, and they offer an paid online learning platform called Mirai Live that gives you access to a very deep library of bonsai videos, with new seasonally relevant videos released every week.  They also publish many videos for free on YouTube.

Bjorn Bjorholm 

Bjorn Bjorholm is another American bonsai artist with a highly refined design sense and a focus on Japanese bonsai styling.  His bonsai studio is called Eisei-en.  Eisei-en’s online learning platform is called Bonsai-U and gives you access to a deep library of bonsai videos, with two new videos every month and two live Q&A sessions.

Peter Chan

Peter Chan is a British bonsai artist with decades of experience and one of the largest bonsai nurseries in England.  He has a large collection of YouTube videos on bonsai, with a particular emphasis on beginner friendly material.

Bonsai Empire

Bonsai Empire is a website that is a one-stop shop for information about bonsai.  You can find information on techniques and styling as well as tree-specific care instructions.  They also have online courses where you can dive into more details.

Eastern Leaf Bonsai

Eastern Leaf Bonsai is a bonsai nursery in California run by bonsai artist Jason Chan.  Eastern Leaf has a large selection of trees available for purchase on their website.  Jason publishes regular YouTube videos.

Developing seedlings  

One satisfying way to grow your own bonsai is to start from a seedling.  Without any real structure or shape, it can be hard to know what to do to effectively turn a seedling into a quality bonsai.  Information on this subject isn’t easy to find, so we collected a few videos specifically on how to develop seedlings.

Mossing for a Show

Like developing seedlings, there aren’t many videos on how to apply moss to a tree for a bonsai show.  Here’s one that might be helpful.

Bonsai Websites

Here is a list of other websites that are great places to learn more about bonsai.

Bonsai Publications

Bonsai Pot Making

A little known opportunity exists for you here in Pittsburgh to make you own bonsai pots at the Braddock Carnegie Library Pottery Class.

419 Library Street / Braddock PA / 15104 / (412)351-5356

Check their website for times and cost.