The Rocky Mountain Bonsai Society


The word “Bon-sai” (often misspelled as bonzai or banzai) is a Japanese term which, literally translated, means “planted in a container”. This art form is derived from an ancient Chinese horticultural practice, part of which was then redeveloped under the influence of Japanese Zen Buddhism.

The Rocky Mountain Bonsai Society (RMBS) is a Denver Botanic Gardens affiliated Plant Society, a member society of the American Bonsai Society and Bonsai Clubs International.  RMBS was started in 1969 and has a proud lineage to the Denver Bonsai Club started by seven Japanese men in 1945.  Please see our history page for more information.
Bonsai are kept small by careful management of the plant’s growth while providing for its horticultural requirements.  Every species of plant has its own special needs.  Colorado's dry climate, cold winters and high altitude differs from what one finds in Bonsai books, Rocky Mountain Bonsai Society (RMBS) can help you succeed with bonsai. Our members have been teaching bonsai and developing private bonsai collections since 1969.  We work with Japanese bonsai species, cold hardy plants from the Rockies and even tropicals.
RMBS presents educational programs to members on some aspect of bonsai at 7:00PM on the first Tuesday of each month, except in December when its holds the annual holiday party.  Unless otherwise noted (on the website) these meetings are held at the Denver Botanic Gardens’ Plant Society Building; 1007 York Street, Denver, CO  80206.  
Eight months of the year members get together on the last Saturday of the month to work together on their individual trees and share their experiences.  Since 1973, RMBS has hosted a public bonsai exhibition at the Denver Botanic Gardens.  Members exhibit their best bonsai trees and Suiseki (Viewing Stones). ​In 2019 we will be hosting the 50th Annual Bonsai and Suiskei Show.
50th Anniversy
Annual Bonsai and Suiskei Show
Saturday, September 7th, 2019 | 9:00 AM to 8:00 PM
Sunday, September 8th, 2019 | 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Denver Botanic Gardens - 1005 York Street; Denver, Colorado  
*The Exhibit and Demonstrations are free with the normal admission to the Denver Botanic Gardens

The Rocky Mountain Bonsai Society is proud to host its 50th Annual Bonsai and Suiskei Show.  Activities will include:
  • RMBS members will be displaying some of their best trees, many of which are indigenous to Colorado. 
  • Bonsai Demonstrations by RMBS members.
  • An in-depth display of the Denver Bonsai Club and the Rocky Mountain Bonsai Society.
  • Tours of the exhibit conducted by RMBS members.
  • Vendors selling beginning bonsai trees and hundreds of Asian style decorative accents.

A professional Bonsai demonstration by a local and nationally recognized bonsai artist Todd Schlafer.