Joshua Roth / ABS New Talent Contest

Eligibility Requirements

Any person living in North America is eligible, provided he or she has been involved with the art of bonsai for fewer than 10 years. Past winners are ineligible, and no individual may participate in the contest more than twice. If entering for the second time, there is no need to submit tree pictures again, but one must complete and submit the declaration form.

Stage One


Each new potential contestant shall submit (either by email or US mail) photographs of 3 bonsai he or she has personally styled. More than one picture of each bonsai is preferred. The photographs do not have to be publication quality, but should show the talent of the artist to the best advantage. A brief description and history of each bonsai should be enclosed. Please also include a signed copy of the declaration form (below) with your submission.

Stage Two

Each contestant shall:

  • Pay his or her expenses to register for the seminar and attend the contest.
  • Be provided with pre-bonsai material by the contest organizers. (Special effort will be made to ensure that all of the trees are of similar size and quality.)
  • Furnish his or her tools, wire, supplies, and turntable. (Power tools are permitted.)
  • Have from 9 AM until 5 PM to work on their tree
  • Have the option of purchasing their tree after it has been displayed and judged. (Non-purchased trees will remain the property of ABS and will be sold at auction.) Contestants are not permitted to receive advice regarding their work on trees. They will not repot their trees during the contest.

Three appointed bonsai artists will judge the completed bonsai. The artist whose bonsai receives the highest number of points will be the winner. The results will be announced at the banquet on Saturday night. The winner will receive  $1000 gift certificate, good for any Joshua Roth tools, with 2nd place being a $500 gift certificate and 3rd, a $250  gift certificate.

Any further questions may be directed to John Ruth, NTC Coordinator, at the address below.


Entries should be sent to: John Ruth, NTC Coordinator, at, or

2055 Jackson Bridge Rd
Bowling Green, KY 42101


All applications must be received by April 1, 2024. Contestants will be notified as to whether or not they have been selected to advance to Stage II on April 15, 2024.

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