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The Bonsai Garden at Lake Merritt is a permanent bonsai display in a Japanese garden setting. It has been made possible through the ongoing generosity of the member clubs of the Golden State Bonsai Federation and is entirely staffed and run by volunteers.

The collection houses hundreds of precious trees and stones by outstanding artists and collectors from around California and the United States. It is also a center for education and ongoing programming for the greater bay area bonsai community. Workshops and seminars are held on an occasional basis.

Bonsai Society of San Francisco encourages its members to become involved in the collection by volunteering for docent duty or helping with maintenance of the garden. Occasional group work days are also scheduled, and the club fills the second shift on the third Saturday of each month.

If you would like to participate in the Bonsai Garden at Lake Merritt docent program, see the official BGLM website. Signups for the club’s spot are taken at general meetings, new members are encouraged to attend in conjunction with older members.


One of the trees at the BGLM is the logo tree of BSSF. This tree has a long history and has been in training for almost 70 years. After decades in the care of various club members it was donated to the collection in 2004. This, among many others, is one reason why BSSF remains committed to keeping the BGLM thriving.

The Collection is closed during rainy weather. Otherwise:
Tues-Fri. 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Sat. 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Sun. 12:00 – 4:00 PM
Closed Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day.

Further Contact information:

Docent house telephone: 510-763-8409
Docent Calendar

Official BGLM Website