Join Our Club
If you decide you're interested in joining us come to one of our meetings and ask someone wearing a badge to direct you to our club treasurer. He will ask you to fill out a Membership Form with contact info and collect your dues. We'll start sending you a newsletter - either via email or printed, or both if you prefer. At the next meeting he'll have a badge for you.
Dues are $35 per person or $45 per family. Renewal is each January. If you join after September your dues also cover the following calendar year.
Expectations of Club Members
Being a member of our club has some responsibilities. Each year our club puts on a show, usually in April somewhere in Palo Alto. This 2-day event is designed to share our love of bonsai with our neighbors and invite them to join our club. Each club member is expected to have three trees in this show, although we realize this isn't feasible for our newest members.
To support our club activities we sell "starter bonsai" to the public at our annual show. The club buys trees from specialist bonsai nurseries and club members convert these into reasonably priced trees that people considering bonsai as a hobby can learn basic bonsai care.
If you are new to bonsai or a newer member of the club, the potting parties are a great way to meet other members and start learning the techniques to style, prune, wire, and pot/repot a bonsai. We have three potting parties during the autumn to early spring when we get together to do this - and assist new members who may need some help. These events are a lot of fun! We provide donuts and coffee but you may also want to bring somethign else for lunch.
We ask each member of Kusamura to donate trees or bonsai related items. First year members are asked to donate at least one tree while longer-term members are expected to donate three trees to add to those bought by the club. If you come to club meetings you'll often find something from the raffle table that would make a good starter bonsai.
Benefits of Being a Club Member
Every month, except August and December, we have a club meeting where there is either a speaker on a bonsai-related topic or a workshop where members are encouraged to bring in one tree to get advice on how to improve their tree. In August we have a social event, such as a picnic. In December we have a club holiday party.
Each January we begin a series of hands-on classes where a small number of students are taught the basics of bonsai. Classes are very modestly priced, just covering materials. There are also workshops for more advanced students. The number of attendees are limited so our instructor has enough time to work with each person. Talk to our club president for more information.
We also provide:
- A library of books, magazines, and tapes that members are encouraged to borrow
- Group tours are arranged to nearby specialized nurseries and to suppliers of pots, tools, wire, and bonsai stock trees
- Semi-private workshops that members are able to participate in with well-known visiting experts.
- Information about the annual state-wide Bonsai convention and the related workshops available. The featured guest artists for the last few years have been various highly regarded Bonsai experts from Japan