Born in Puerto Rico an the mid 60’s, Toby has lived in South Florida since 1987. While studying architecture in Miami he established a successful luxury yacht detailing and maintenance service company. Going on to work in various capacities in the construction industry and currently as District Manager with an international plumbing and heating systems manufacturer.
His journey into the art of Bonsai began when he picked up a copy of “Tropical Bonsai Magazine” at a local store. The publication sparked his curiosity and led him to purchase a small tree from Mary Miller’s store “Bonsai Bench”. This encouraged Toby to take the next step as he began learning the art under the tutelage of Carlos Consuegra, Lui Rayon & Mary Madison. During the two year period Toby participate in intense weekend work sessions or as he calls it, “bootcamp”, in order to develop his mastery of the art.
His mentor Lui Rayon, would have Toby wire trees up to seven times in order to hone his skills, demanding perfection while he practiced the appropriate bending angles and wire positioning that would have Toby achieve a dramatic and unique styling known now as the “Puerto Rican top”, or “the fold over apex.
Toby’s skills have gained him two BSF tree of the year awards. He has exhibited in numerous shows and has participated as a headliner in four state conventions. Always ready to share his love and knowledge of Bonsai, Toby offers his unique presentation skills to state clubs and study groups. With his ability to make a tree look old in a single wiring session he has become popular and beloved local artist in the Florida Bonsai scene; all the while finding time to serve as Vice President of the Bonsai Society of Miami.
But what Toby enjoys the most is the camaraderie experienced with friends such as Ed Trout, Allen Carver, Hiram Macias, Aaron Buchler and Mike Cartrett. When they share their enthusiasm and love for Bonsai in a deep and serious manner but with a unique casual style.
Toby has a passion for Tropicals, Mame, Shohins and a good eye for detail and ramification. His philosophy in Bonsai is simple… as he is often heard to say, “let your trees and work speak to you.”
- 2003 BSF New Talent Winner
- 2003 BSM Best of Show Award
- 2004 BSM Show 1st & 2nd Place Shohin Award
- 2010 BSF Presidents Awards
TRAVEL & SERVICES
I will travel to programs within Florida, with advanced notice. I am available for demos, workshops, critiques, judging and club events. I am also available for programs elsewhere in the United States and Latin America.
Please contact me via email for fees