1962:  The Fukumoto family grew houseplant bonsai in their apartment and expanded to outdoor bonsai after moving to their Kaneohe home.  David co-founded the non-profit Hawaii Bonsai Association and began teaching. In addition to growing prepared bonsai stock for students, they also grew Brassaia Lava Plantings as easy-care gift items to grow indoors.
       1973:  The Fukumotos moved to the Big Island of Hawaii and created the first Hawaii certified export nursery. David became a research affiliate of Lyon Arboretum, published bonsai magazine articles, played a major role in the Hawaii 1980 International Bonsai Congress, co-founded the Big Island Bonsai Association in 1981, became an American Bonsai Society director, and was nominated for the National Heritage Fellowship, the country's highest cultural award.
       1985-1986:  The nursery used the postal system to mail order bonsai to all parts of the United States and air freight to several foreign countries.  It was consistently sold out and incorporated to create the 17-acre Kona Fuku-Bonsai Center as a major bonsai visitor attraction with eventually over 200 mostly Big Island stockholders. The non-profit Mid-Pacific Bonsai Foundation was formed to serve as the public guardian of memorial bonsai and the liaison for community participation.
        1989-1990:  Fuku-Bonsai sprayed defective DuPont Benlate fungicide which killed or stunted plants that had been in training since 1973. The University of Hawaii monitored our trials that showed that the Benlate was the cause of our plants dying. Fuku-Bonsai played major roles in the 1989 World Bonsai Convention in Japan and the Hawaii 1990 International Bonsai Congress. 
        1992-1994: The Kona Fuku-Bonsai Center opened to critical acclaim but quickly sold out the reduced inventory. The corporation was forced to seek Chapter 11 Bankruptcy protection and shortly after DuPont agreed to a product liability settlement that was only a small percentage of losses. Our choice was to accept the settlement or be liquidated. We paid all creditors 100% + interest and began a fight to survive.
        We brought the exhibit bonsai collection and retrenched to Kurtistown including building a modest new Fuku-Bonsai Cultural Center & Hawaii State Bonsai Repository co-sponsored by our sister non-profit Mid-Pacific Bonsai Foundation. It included Bonsai Days on the second Saturday of each month and this helped to maintain the exhibit collection and provide editorial material for national bonsai magazine articles and the future website.  Visitors became increasingly interested in training True Indoor Bonsai and we began giving workshops.  
       1995-1997:  We learned that DuPont withheld, falsified, and misrepresented evidence submitted to the courts and sued for fraud damages.  Our original Brassaia crop could not be grown in the contaminated nursery. We switched to growing Dwarf Schefflera and began exploring ways to diversify and restructure including forming Fuku-Aquatics to research potential aquaculture specialties.
        1998-2000:  WWW.FUKUBONSAI.COM website began. PREMIUM KEIKI BONSAI WORKSHOP PACKAGE and #8 size CONVERSION KITS  were introduced and the first DWARF SCHEFFLERA TRUE INDOOR BONSAI™ WORKSHOP HANDBOOK was published. 8LS8 LIVING SCULPTURE and larger CUSTOM COLLECTION in 17"x12"x2" oval pots become more popular.  Trials of new "Roots!" styling led to additional styling innovations.
        2001-2002: LOVING LOVABLES in 5"x3"2" pots introduced with "sumo," "roots," and "Hawaiian dragon" stylings.  Fuku-Bonsai becomes a unique Hawaiian agricultural value-added product development, fulfillment, and niche marketing company with direct retailing at the Fuku-Bonsai Cultural Center, mail order and the internet.  
        2003-2004:  THE AMAZING HAWAIIAN MICRO-LOBSTERS!™ introduced as Fuku-Bonsai's second major specialty. Our innovative units focused on creating optimum environments and were the first commercial units to successfully reproduce. We finally began accepting credit cards.


        2005-2006: Interest continues to grow as earlier customers begin to utilize more difficult training techniques and request older larger plants.  The #17 size CONVERSION KIT and CUSTOM COLLECTION sales continue to increase.  More customers are utilizing supplemental indoor lighting and achieving superior results!  Field trials begin to create a superior, smaller, more economical beginner bonsai workshop packages for creating a high-quality, high-success "first bonsai." The largest challenge is to create quantities of superior 2" prepared bonsai stock!


This ends an epic nightmare and struggle for survival that began with spraying defective Benlate in 1989!  During the eighteen years, we were continually under stress and took huge losses.  But we also had an extraordinary amount of support and assistance from the Big Island community, our staff, associates,  stockholders and customers!  MAHALO!
     ●   INTRODUCTORY WORKSHOP PACKAGE INTRODUCED!  The long waited 10-component kit proves popular and ideal for teaching "CREATING YOUR FIRST BONSAI!" classes. It's ideal for use with the 3rd edition TRUE INDOOR BONSAI DWARF SCHEFFLERA WORKSHOP HANDBOOK.  45 years after the Fukumoto family began bonsai, they've achieved the "bonsai educational holy grail" in creating the easiest and most successful way to learn and teach bonsai! 
       ●  MAJOR MICRO-LOBSTER PROGRESS!  In the past year, there were major breakthroughs by researchers and participating hobbyists with Fuku-Bonsai playing a clearinghouse role. (1) Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) cleared the use of rotenone as a fish killer to remove alien predators from the anchialine ponds.  (2) Hawaii Department of Agriculture are conducting certified applicator examinations for the legal use of rotenone. (3) US Fish and Wildlife Service removed all Hawaiian anchialine pond shrimp from the threatened or endangered specie candidate lists! (4) Fuku-Bonsai begins Micro-Lobster educational programs in support of schools and higher educational institutions!
       ●   NEW KURTISTOWN FUKU-BONSAI CULTURAL CENTER AUTHORIZED! The Annual Meeting of Stockholders on September 29, 2007 approved the beginning of planning to build a new Fuku-Bonsai Cultural Center in Kurtistown. There are several steps that must be completed before construction can begin, but we have begun with a clear commitment to create the finest bonsai center where individuals can study True Indoor Bonsai!  We will continue to build upon our history of bonsai education and conduct workshops at all levels.  Come study and/or join us!
       ●  NEW PROMOTIONAL PARTNER PROGRAM DEVELOPED.  Fuku-Bonsai was able to survive due to the support and assistance of over 100 Big Island Promotional Partners!  We will be improving the program as part of our strategy of freezing wholesale and expanding retail and fulfillment shipping.
       ●  BOOKS & OTHER EDUCATIONAL MATERIALS WILL BE WRITTEN. There's a lot of original knowledge here and some of it is on this website.  The True Indoor Bonsai Workshop Handbook and the Micro-Lobster Handbook are printed here on our printer/copiers. Work has begun on full length texts for both True Indoor Bonsai and Micro-Lobsters as well as Teacher's Manuals, DVD's, and graphic training aids.
       ●  NEW BONSAI PRODUCTS WILL BE DEVELOPED. The increasing interest in True Indoor Bonsai is resulting in repeat visitors taking more advanced workshops. You'll be seeing more of their articles on this website as they share their experiences and the techniques that they are refining after they return home. You'll be seeing more new products being created to fill a growing need.
       ●  COMPLETE MICRO-LOBSTER UNIT REDESIGN!  Our trials over the last few years have been exceptionally successful and it is very satisfying to receive customer reports of successful breeding and continuing recommendations have resulted in many small improvements.  So it's time to upgrade our product line and we are excited about the units now being designed and the exciting prototypes!
       ●  "FUKU-BONSAI UNIVERSITY!"  As part of the new Fuku-Bonsai Cultural Center, we're planning to create a place where we can teach bonsai classes spread out over several days as part of a Hawaii based vacation. This will including assisting those who will be utilizing our plants for teaching True Indoor Bonsai in all parts of the country. 


               FUKU-BONSAI WILL BE "PASSING THE TORCH" TO THE NEXT GENERATION AND YOU'RE INVITED TO BE A PART!  The Fukumotos have been pleased and honored to have been part of the support group for the "Greatest Generation" who fought World War II and came home to create a better Hawaii! This special generation focused on building a community and built International Bonsai.  In spite of changing generational values,  Fuku-Bonsai will preserve and continue the values of the past generation.  Soon it will be time for the Fukumotos to step aside and we are putting together an exceptional team of managers and staff to build upon Fuku-Bonsai's economic foundation. 

          ●    IF YOU'RE RETIRED OR HAVE SOME SPARE TIME,  CONSIDER JOINING THE NON-PROFIT MID-PACIFIC BONSAI FOUNDATION!  There will be many opportunities to volunteer and assist while participating in positive activity and make a contribution.  Help maintain the most innovative bonsai collection!  Interact with visitors to Hawaii from all over the world!  Teach beginner workshops and learn while doing! We will be building a docent program that will include senior activities.  If you're committed to assist in preserving Hawaii's special values and will work toward making it better for everyone, we will assist a move to Hawaii. 

          ●    FUKU-BONSAI IS RECAPITALIZING TO FINANCE THE NEW PROJECTS AND YOU'RE INVITED TO JOIN US!  We were able to achieve a lot and survive with the support and assistance of our original stockholders.  Many have reached an age that they must cash in their stock and we seek new stockholders to help finance our future. If you can make long-term equity investments, have visited, or have a past relationship with Fuku-Bonsai, please contact me for more information at

         ●  WE ARE EXPANDING! Our company once totaled over 25 employees. During the difficult years we steadily shrank to only five including founders David and Myrtle Fukumoto, senior plant manage Michael Imaino (1983),  Edison Yadao (1999) and Yolly Macadangdang (1999).  Cliff Tanaka rejoined us to assist and new staffer is in probation. Alan Squier and others will be joining us in the future as we move into the future!

             Clearly, Hawaii is not a place to get rich as living costs and the costs of housing are amongst the highest in the United States and this is not the place for "in-your-face-individualism"!  We're creating a close knit team, a Hawaiian-international community, and a unique rural lifestyle. New members must be able to contribute, be accepted by EVERY current member, clear an intense 3-month probationary period, and be able to commit to a long-term association. While compensation is modest, there will be future housing assistance as well as an opportunity to have an equity position.  If you believe you have what it takes, consider taking the first step to joining us by forwarding your resume by email to  


***  Return to Fuku-Bonsai's homepage
***  Return to About Fuku-Bonsai (portal)
PO Box 6000 (17-856 Olaa Road), Kurtistown, Hawaii 96760
Phone (808) 982-9880  Email:  URL: