James Clever has been a member of both the Pacific Northwest Chapter and the American Bamboo Society since 1986. James officially started his business “Bamboo Gardener” in 1989. Seeing a niche market in the growing Seattle, Washington area James opened his specialty nursery that catered to those seeking bamboo plants and services by a gardener that could meet the needs of this elusive vigorous plant. His participation and active attendance in the PNW events led to his election as PNW president in the Fall of 1990. Just in time to head up the first ever out of California American Bamboo Society meeting set for Seattle in the Fall of 1991. The concept of a conference as a destination event that featured renowned speakers, bamboo artisans and tours of bamboo growing in members nursery settings, public & private gardens was a group effort and a new idea that was put in motion and adopted by every chapter from that point on.
Education of the public on the common novice gardener level has always been at the forefront in James effort in his business and the bamboo society. Participation by the PNW in garden shows, public garden bamboo maintenance was always a mainstay in his efforts a president of the PNW. Since 1992 when he bowed out as president he has built his business up, published a book by Daphne Lewis, become a father, stays active in the garden show events and has attended conferences in Seattle, Savannah, Encinitas, Saratoga, Atlanta, Portland, New Orleans, Miami, Pasadena, Texas, Hilo, San Francisco, Tacoma, back again in Savannah and last year in New Iberia.
James served as PNW Representative on the ABS Board from New Orleans to Hilo and was elected ABS President in 2010 and recently represented the ABS at the WBO conference in Europe (on his own dime!). He is often seen talking bamboo, taking pictures of bamboo and bamboo people and is a contributor to the ABS Magazine, photographer, writer, husband, father, bamboo gardener and Ambassador to the plant that brings us all together. www.bamboogardener.com