Bonsai on the Bayou

A Bonsai Clubs International & Lone Star Bonsai Federation international convention

April 25 – 28, 2024

hosted by The Houston Bonsai Society

Register Now

Welcome to Bonsai on the Bayou 2024

Hosted by the Houston Bonsai Society at the Marriot Westchase, featuring many guest artists including: Bjorn Bjornholm, Sergio Cuan, Min Hsuan Lo, Sean Smith and many more leading seminars, workshops and demos. There will be raffles, auctions, exhibitors and merchandise and a chance to see a huge selection of world-class bonsai, kusamono, shitakusa and suiseki from Texas and around the world.

Abreviated Schedule

View the full schedule here

Thursday, April 25

12 pm - 5 pmExhibit Set Up
1 pm - 6 pmRegistration Open
1 pm - 4 pm BCI Meetings
6:30-9:30Tag Team Design Challenge - Hurley Johnson
5 pm - 6:15 pm Supper (On Your Own)
6 pm - 9 pm Vendor Area Open
6:30 pm - 8 pmKickoff Reception
8 pm - 9:30 pm LSBF Board Meeting

Friday, April 26, 2024

7 am - 8:15 am Breakfast (On Your Own)
8:00 am - 5 pm Registration Open
8 am - 6 pm Vendor Area Open
8:30 am - 11:30 amWorkshops - view full list
9 am - 4 pm Exhibit Area Open
10 am - 11:30 am Seminar: The Science of Bonsai Soil
11:45 am Raffle Drawing
12 pm - 1:15 pm Lunch (On Your Own)
1:00 pm – 2:30 pmTexas Native Species for Bonsai
1:30 pm - 4:30 pm Workshops - view full list
2:30 pm - 4 pmSeminar: Organic Methods in Bonsai Care
5:00 pm Raffle Drawing
5 pm - 6 pm Exhibit Critiques 1 & 2
6:30 pm - 9:30 pm Dinner, Awards Presentation & Live Demonstrations

Saturday, April 27

7 am - 8:15 am Breakfast (On Your Own)
8:00 am - 5 pm Exhibit Area Open
8 am - 6 pm Vendor Area Open
8:30 am - 11:30 amWorkshops - view full list
8:30 pm - 4:30 pm Workshop 15: Ashe Juniper
10 am - 11:30 am Seminar: GIMP Software for Bonsai Design
11:45 am Raffle Drawing
12 pm - 1:15 pm Lunch (On Your Own)
1:30 pm - 4:30 pm Workshops - view full list
1 pm - 2:30 pmSeminar: Suiseki Collecton, Selection & Evaluation
2:30 pm - 4 pmSeminar: Air Layering: A discussion and Demonstration
4 pm - 6 pm Auction Item Check-In
5:00 pm Raffle Drawing
5 pm - 6 pm Exhibit Critiques 3 & 4
6:30 pm - 9:30 pm Banquet, Silent & Live Auctions

Sunday, April 28

7am pm - 8:15 pmBreakfast (On Your Own)
8 am - 10 amRegistration Open
8 am - 12 pm Vendor Area Open
8:30 am - 11:30 amWorkshops - view full list
8:30 am - 11:45 amExhibit Area Open
10 am - 11:30 amSeminar: Styling Bald Cypress Bonsai
11:30 am Final Raffle Drawing
12:00 pm Convention Concludes

Event Layout

Map

Guestions? Email: [email protected]

Event Details

Hotel Accommodations

Provided by the Marriott Houston Westchase Hotel (800) 452-5110. Ask for the Lone Star Bonsai Federation special rate of $105 per night (Offer ends on March 25, 2024).

Registration

Before February 1, 2024 -BCI/LSBF Member Early Registration is $295. BCI/LSBF Member Registration after February 1 is $325. Non-member Registration is $365. Each full registration includes all meals (Friday and Saturday evenings), access to the exhibit and vendor areas, Friday night demonstrations, raffles, auctions, and observation of workshops. Full and single day registrants may register for workshops and the small group demonstrations which require additional fees.

Accompanying Guest Registration ($215) – Includes meals and access to vendor and exhibit areas, Friday evening demonstrations, auctions, and silent observation of workshops and seminars.

Single Day Registration ($150) – Includes access to seminars, exhibits, vendor areas and may register for workshops and small group demos. Meals and the opening reception events are not included.

Single event tickets – These tickets are intended to accommodate the attendance of guests/spouses at the more social events during the convention. Thursday night reception - $60, Friday night dinner and demonstrations - $75, and Saturday banquet - $100.

Visitor pass (Free) – Allows access to the exhibition and the vendor area only. No meals included.

Exhibition Entries

Any full registrant may submit a tree for the juried exhibit. Please limit your entries to no more than three of any type of exhibit. A $25 entry fee will be charged for each bonsai display accepted into the exhibit except for “legacy” trees (below). Entry forms may be found on the Houston Bonsai Society web page with other convention materials. At least one photo is required.

Exhibition Awards – The Lone Star Bonsai Federation Excellence in Bonsai recognitions will go to: Best in Show - $500 plus the BCI Medallion, Best Conifer - $150, Best Deciduous - $150, Best Shohin Tree - $150, Best Tropical - $150, Best Broadleaf Evergreen - $150, Best Texas Native - $150, Best Cascade or Semi-cascade - $150, Best Viewing Stone - $150, and best shitakusa - $150. Awards will be presented at the Friday night banquet.

There will be a special legacy exhibit. This exhibit is by invitation only and the invitations will go to past winners of LSBF Excellence in Bonsai awards. Legacy tree owners do not pay an entry fee, but must complete the exhibition entry form. Trees in the legacy exhibit are not eligible for prizes at this convention.

Each display in the exhibit will be photographed and included in the book commemorating the convention. The owner of the display will receive a digital version of the picture of their display.

Raffles

Raffles will be held at 11:45 AM and 5:00 PM on Friday and Saturday. A final raffle will be held on Sunday at 11:30.

Auctions

A silent auction and a live auction will be held on Saturday evening in the Grand Pavilion Foyer after dinner.

Demonstrations

Bjorn Bjorholm, Min Hsuan Lo, and Sergio Cuan will conduct simultaneous demonstrations after dinner on Friday evening in the Grand Pavilion Foyer. Each of the demonstration trees will be auctioned on Saturday evening.

Workshops

Register early as several workshops will fill quickly. Registering on-line will help ensure your spot in workshops. For paper registrations, acceptance into the workshops will be determined by the date payment is received.

Tag Team Bonsai Contest

Thursday afternoon from 4:00 – 6:00 there will be a Tag Team Bonsai Design contest where teams of three will alternate working to style a bonsai. Prizes for this effort are yet to be determined.

Shipping

Boxing and shipping of purchases will be available on Sunday from 9:00 AM to 12 PM in Westchase 4. Packing and shipping costs will be determined by the shipping company.

CONVENTION HOTEL: Marriott Houston Westchase

2900 Briarpark Dr
Houston, TX 77042
For written directions click here.
Reservations (800) 452-5110, Front Desk (713) 978-7400
Ask for the "Lone Star Bonsai Federation" group rate

The Marriott Houston Westchase is the official hotel venue, the site of the convention, and the only hotel offering a special discounted room rate. For substantial savings and to be close to convention activities, book your room at the beautiful Marriott Houston Westchase. Remember to ask for the American Bonsai Society rate of $105/night plus taxes. Offer ends March 25, 2024. There are a limited number of rooms, so reserve early. The hotel offers spacious, well-appointed rooms, contemporary Texas-themed décor, and high-speed Internet is available throughout the AAA rated 3-diamond hotel. Other amenities include the new M Club Lounge, indoor/outdoor heated swimming pools, a fitness center, free parking, a wonderful Westchase restaurant and a Starbucks® coffee house. The Westchase section of Houston is conveniently located near key Houston landmarks.

OVERFLOW HOTELS

Hilton Houston Westchase

9999 Westheimer Rd.
Houston, TX 77042
Reservations (713) 974-1000 or (800) 445-8667

This full-service, 13-story hotel offers 297 rooms and is located approximately 1/4 mile from the convention hotel. The Hilton Houston Westchase hosts the Rio Ranch restaurant specializing in Tex-Mex cuisine

Courtyard By Marriott Westchase

9975 Westheimer Rd
Houston, TX 77042
Reservations (800) 236-2427, Front Desk (713) 784-3003

The Courtyard By Marriott Westchase is a three-story hotel has 153 rooms with balconies and is located approximately 1/4 mile from the convention hotel.

Our Headline Artists

View full bios

Bjorn Bjorholm

Bjorn Bjorholm

Sergio Cuan

Sergio Cuan

Min Hsuan Lo

Min Hsuan Lo

Sean Smith

Sean Smith

The Rest of our Presenting Bonsai Artists

View full bios

Dr. Scott Barboza

Dr. Scott Barboza

Randy Bennett

Randy Bennett

Enrique Castaño de la Serna

Enrique Castaño de la Serna

Angela Chandler

Angela Chandler

Sooncheng Cheah

Sooncheng Cheah

Dave Kreutz

Dave Kreutz

Mike Lane

Mike Lane

Alex Leong

Alex Leong

Joey McCoy

Joey McCoy

Frank Mihalic

Frank Mihalic

Pedro J. Morales

Pedro J. Morales

Evan Pardue

Evan Pardue

Alan M. Raymond

Alan M. Raymond

Carlos Gabriel Santiago

Carlos Gabriel Santiago

Workshops

View the Full Workshop Descriptions

Join an Intimate Demo with the Experts

Small Group Demonstration with Min Hsuan Lo

Most bonsai demonstrations we attend include large audiences that restrict the amount of interaction with the artist doing the demonstration. The small group demonstration places an artist in the room with only a limited number of people so that everyone can enjoy an intimate, informal interaction. Master Lo is rarely available to US audiences and is known worldwide as a leading bonsai artist. Here is a chance to hear how he approaches styling bonsai, and how bonsai, particularly in Taiwan, compares and contrasts to our approaches in the US.

Small Group Demonstration with Bjorn Bjorholm

Large group audiences restrict the amount of interaction that you can experience with the artist doing the demonstration. These small group demonstrations place an artist in the room with a limited number of people so that everyone can be part of a relaxed, informal interaction between audience and artist. Bjorn will spend a morning working on two different trees while explaining what he is doing and why, along with covering any other related issues the group wishes to discuss.

Special Bring Your Own Tree Workshops

Workshop #4 – Style Your Tree with World-Recognized Bonsai Educator Bjorn Bjorholm!

Enjoy the opportunity to improve on the styling of one of your trees with advice and guidance from one of the most talented US bonsai artists in one of his final appearances before he moves to Japan. Bring a tree from home or purchase one in the vendor area. Then, spend half a day working with Bjorn

Workshop #9 – Renowned Artist Sergio Cuan Will Help Take Your Tree to New Heights!

Relish in the styling of one of your good trees with advice and guidance from a renowned bonsai artist and deciduous tree guru. Bring a tree from home or purchase one in the vendor area, and then spend half a day working on it with Sergio.

Workshop #20 – Elevate Your Tree’s artistry with International Award-Winner Min Hsuan Lo!

Learn more about the styling of one of your good trees with advice and guidance from an internationally recognized bonsai artist. Bring a tree from home or purchase one in the vendor area, and spend half a day working on it with Mr. Lo.

Your Outstanding Workshop Material

Lost Wax

Workshop #1 – Lost Wax Bonsai Pendant With Frank Mihalic

The Lost Wax process, also called “cire-perdue,” is a method of metal casting where molten metal is poured into a mold that has been created or carved into a wax mold. After the metal is poured, the wax is melted away. The lost wax process is an ancient method that dates back to the 3rd millennium BC. It is still pretty much unchanged to this day.

Lost Wax

Workshop #2 – Satsuki Azalea with David Kreutz

David is personally selecting a group of trees for his workshop. We will post photos just as soon as his import process is completed. The trees for this workshop should be in the $250 - $300 price range. You must purchase your tree from David prior to the workshop. The workshop fee does not include the price of your tree.

Cedar Elm

Workshop #3 – Specimen Cedar Elm With Sergio Cuan

Bonsai on the Bayou 2024 will feature at least 6 workshops using native American and Texas material. One of the highlights of the convention will be a specimen quality cedar elm workshop led by Sergio Cuan. Pictured here is one of the workshop trees. All the trees were collected near Victoria, TX, two or three years prior to the convention. Most have 3+ inch diameter trunks, although a few smaller trees are included for those seeking a medium-sized bonsai in the end. Most will be informal uprights. One is a multi-trunk clump.

Workshop #5 – Japanese Boxwood with Min Hsuan Lo

The Japanese boxwood can be an excellent choice for designing in oak tree style. These trees are older nursery stock originally in 7-gallon containers that were repotted in Spring, 2023. Single trunks are 2+ inches in diameter while the multi-trunk trees are a little less than that. The material will produce bonsai of varying sizes. Some of the trees will be shorter once styled, while a few of them will result in tall, elegant specimens.

Lost Wax

Workshop #6 – Loblolly Pine with Alex Leong

Pinus taeda, commonly known as loblolly pine, is one of several pines native to the Southeastern United States, from East Texas to Florida, and north to southern New Jersey. The wood industry classifies the species as a southern yellow pine. These trees are multi-flush pines that, unlike the black pine, can produce new growth on bare branches even after needles are pulled. This species is just beginning to show up in US bonsai cultivation. Houston Bonsai Society Expert Artist Alex Leong has been working with them for at least a decade and brings his horticultural knowledge of the trees to this workshop. One of his loblolly pines serves as the display tree in the 2024 Bonsai on the Bayou convention logo. The trees for the workshop are a mix of trees collected near Houston and from nursery stock. Alex wired movement into the trunks this past year to provide interesting trunk lines for the workshop.

Lost Wax

Workshop #7 – Kusamono with Sooncheng Cheah

Beyond its definition as companion “grass” or “thing,” kusamono holds a deep meaning to many in the Asian culture. Kusamono is seen to represent the idea that all things in nature and in bonsai, no matter how small or insignificant they may seem are connected, and contribute to the beauty of the whole. And who better to learn about the art and skill of kusamono than with National Award-Winning Artist Soon Cheah. Soon is widely recognized for her work, has won the award for best shitakusa at the National Exhibit, and was invited as one of three artists to put on a kusamono exhibit at Nationals. Each attendee will receive all the plants and supplies necessary to create their own one-of-a-kind kusamono designs.

Cedar Elm

Workshop #8 – Gmelina “Parrot’s Beak” with Pedro Morales

Gmelina phillipensis, also known as Parrot’s Beak, is a tropical tree that is rapidly becoming popular as bonsai material in the United States. They develop quickly, growing thick trunks, nice ramification and flaring nebari. Gmelina make excellent shohin and small sized bonsai or can be grown out to larger sizes as well. The material for this workshop was grown by Pedro in Puerto Rico. The cost of the material is not included in this workshop fee. You must buy your tree from Pedro before the workshop begins. Prices will range from $125 - $300.

Cedar Elm

Workshop #10 – Tiger Bark Ficus With Min Hsuan Lo

Min Hsuan Lo is known as one of the most outstanding bonsai artists in the world with Ficus microcarpa. The trees for this workshop are Tiger Bark Ficus trees imported from Master Lo’s hometown in Taiwan.

Lost Wax

Workshop #11 – Sea Hibiscus Grafting with Mike Lane

Are you at the point in your bonsai journey where you want to learn how to perform scion grafts? Sea hibiscus is a great specimen tree on which to perform scion grafts because they have thick cambium layers and are easier to graft successfully than many other species. Mike Lane of Kitsune Bonsai will be teaching you how to graft these trees using the small-leafed, red stem variety as scions and the larger trunked, larger leafed variety for the trunk. The resulting trees will make excellent bonsai specimens in a short period of time. Participants must purchase their tree from Mike before the workshop begins. Prices will range from approximately $50 -- $250.

Lost Wax

Workshop #12 – Trident Maple Root Over Rock with Carlos Santiago

If you’re interested in creating a root-over-rock bonsai but aren’t quite sure how to do it, this is the workshop for you. The material for this workshop are 2-year-old trident maple trees from Bill Valvanis that have been grown in 4” PVC pipe “pots.” The method allows for the development of long roots needed to create a root-over-rock bonsai display. Carlos will assist you in transferring your tree onto a rock, securing the roots properly, and repotting them into 2-gallon pots to encourage additional time to develop.

Cedar Elm

Workshop #13 – Water Elm with Evan Pardue

Evan is the owner of Underhill Bonsai Nursery in Folsom, LA. He is known for his work with Louisiana natives species including the Water Elm. The trees for this workshop are collected water elms that Evan has selected for our convention. Please note that the workshop fee does not include a tree. You must purchase one from Evan before the workshop begins. Prices will range from $35 -$200.

Workshop #14 – Sweet Gum with Sergio Cuan

The Sweet Gum, Liquidambar styraciflua, is native to much of the southeastern US, including eastern Texas. They produce deeply furrowed bark and, given a little cool weather, display extremely beautiful Autumn color ranging from yellows to red in Autumn. These trees came from a local nursery and were trunk cut in 2023. They are well on their way in their bonsai journey. Trunks measure approximately 1 ½ inches in diameter on trees that are nearly 24” tall.

Lost Wax

Workshop #15 – Specimen Ashe Juniper with Bjorn Bjorholm

This workshop is part of our theme that focuses on native US species as bonsai. These Ashe Junipers were collected by Ken Schindler in South Texas and have been in growing pots for at least two years. Due to the complexity of the material, please note that this is an all-day workshop requiring skill and experience. Since the trees vary significantly in size, you will purchase your tree at the beginning of the workshop. Prices will range from $200 - $800 and that price is not included in the workshop registration fee.

Workshop #16 – Specimen Portulacaria Afra with Enrique Castaño

The Houston Bonsai Society was fortunate enough to obtain a limited number of robust specimen quality Portulacaria afra (Dwarf Jade or Elephant Grass) for this convention. These fast-growing trees have 3+” diameter trunks with nice movement. The trees are nearly 3 feet tall with all the branching needed for quick development into show quality bonsai.

Cedar Elm

Workshop #17 – Bonsai For Children with Frank Mihalic

Do you have youngsters who are interested in bonsai, and would like to try it? Then this is perfect for them. Frank has years of experience introducing younger generations to the art of bonsai. Each child will receive a book about bonsai and will style and pot up a bonsai tree in the workshop. Note that your child does not need to be registered for the convention to participate in this workshop.

Cedar Elm

Workshop #18 – Bald Cypress with Randy Bennett

Randy is a leading authority on bald cypress bonsai and served as a past President of the Greater New Orleans Bonsai Society. He is the founder and moderator of the Facebook group, Bald Cypress Bonsai. The trees for his workshop were collected in southwestern Louisiana 2-3 years ago. They are medium sized trees, with trunk diameters of around 4.” Styled trees should wind up being approximately 24-30” tall.

Lost Wax

Workshop #19 – Trident Maple with Sergio Cuan

Trident maples are one of the most sought-after maple species for bonsai in the Southern US heat. The trees for this workshop were field grown in South Carolina and are 8-10 years old. Trunks are 2-3” in diameter which will make them excellent material for a medium sized bonsai. Work with Deciduous authority Sergio to perform the initial styling of these beautiful pre-bonsai specimens.

Workshop #21 – Variegated Serissa Clump with Sergio Cuan

The trees in this workshop are a variegated cultivar of Serissa foetida. The trees were curated to provide a natural clump style design. The variegated foliage adds interest to the trees, and they bloom through the year reliably. Serissa serves as a great choice for a flowering bonsai that can be grown indoors if you so desire.

Workshop #22 – Literati White Loropetalum with Bjorn Bjorholm

One of Bjorn’s favorite bonsai styles is literati. The material for this workshop is the white flowering variety of Chinese fringe flower. The trees were selected to provide long slender trunklines with lots of movement and play in your final design. Join Bjorn in developing these beautiful and graceful trees

Workshop #23 – Hong Kong Kumquat with Min Hsuan Lo

A blooming and fruiting species, the Hong Kong kumquat is also known as Golden Bean kumquat or kinzu. These are 8-year-old trees in one-gallon pots. Trunk diameters are ½ - ¾”. Hong Kong kumquats are very reliable at producing white blossoms in late Spring and ½” diameter fruit that ripens to a reddish orange in the Fall. Given the fruit and leaf size, the appearance scales nicely as a mature tree in miniature. These trees will make highly interesting small bonsai once trained.

 

Registration


View an exhibitor entry form here.


Register here.