National Bonsai & Penjing Museum

National Bonsai & Penjing Museum The National Bonsai Foundation is a nonprofit organization that was created to sustain the National Bonsai and Penjing Museum. NBF also helps the United States National Arboretum showcase the arts of Bonsai and Penjing to the general public.

The National Bonsai and Penjing Museum is located on the 446acre campus of the US National Arboretum in northeast Washington, D.C. Each year over 200,000 people visit the museum. Distinguished national and international guests of various Federal Departments are also among the visitors.Mission statement"The National Bonsai Foundation is a section 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization established in 1982 to sustain the National Bonsai and Penjing Museum. It cooperates with the U. S. National Arboretum by offering financial support and advice to the museum.This private/public collaboration between the Foundation and the Arboretum enables the museum to promote the art of bonsai and penjing to visitors through masterpiece displays and educational programs while also fostering intercultural friendship and understanding."HistoryIn 1976, the country of Japan gave a gift of 53 Bonsai trees to America for the United States Bicentennial. The trees were selected by the Nippon Bonsai Association, with financial assistance from the Japan Foundation. The trees arrived at the Potomac Bonsai Association, and volunteers worked with the staff of the US National Arboretum to keep the trees in display condition. In 1979, Janet Lanman talked with Dr. John Creech, Director of the Arboretum the possibility of adding American bonsai to the museum. Dr. Creech proposed this idea to well-known Bonsai teacher Marion Gyllenswan. An independent body of Bonsai authorities was assigned to review private Bonsai collections, possibly as a part of a national collection. These Bonsai authorities were called the National Bonsai Committee. In 1982, the National Bonsai Committee was reformed into the National Bonsai Foundation (NBF). The National Bonsai Foundation recruited people from all across the country to be directors. The members of the first Board were Marybel Balendonck, Larry Ragle, Melba Tucker, Frederic Ballard, and H. William Merritt. MaryAnn Orlando served as the Executive Director and principal fund raiser for the NBF. Marion Gyllenswan was appointed the first president of the NBF. (Frederic Ballard would be the second President from 1990-1996 and Felix B. Laughlin would be the third from 1996 to present).

Operating as usual


Washington D.C., DC

Opening Hours

Monday 10:00 - 17:00
Tuesday 10:00 - 17:00
Wednesday 10:00 - 17:00
Thursday 10:00 - 17:00
Friday 10:00 - 17:00
Saturday 10:00 - 17:00
Sunday 10:00 - 17:00


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