In Grass Hysteria!, May was kidnapped by a hungry Skarmory and ended up lost in a reserve for Grass-type Pokémon called the Forbidden Forest. There, she met a clumsy Bulbasaur trying to pick flowers. Bulbasaur warmed up to May after being saved from a fall, but the other Pokémon in the reserve repeatedly tried to attack May. However, Bulbasaur explained to Venusaur, her parent and the ruler of the Forbidden Forest, that May was a friend. Before May had to leave, Bulbasaur decided to stay with her.
Bulbasaur made her Contest debut in the Battle Round of the Rubello Town Pokémon Contest in Cruisin' for a Losin'. She was initially excited to participate, but became nervous when she got on stage, resulting in a loss.
In A Cacturne for the Worse, Bulbasaur was used in the Purika Contest. In the Appeals Round, she started her performance by using Razor Leaf. As the leaves were flying through the air, she whipped them with the vines from her Vine Whip attack, impressing the three judges and advancing May to the Contest Battles. There, she was seen defeating Kent's Surskit to reach the final round, where she battled against Harley's Cacturne. Their battle was a hard fought one, but in the end Bulbasaur was able to defeat the Scarecrow Pokémon with a combination of Razor Leaf and Petal Dance, giving May her fourth Hoenn Ribbon.
Bulbasaur also competed in the Battle Round of the Hoenn Grand Festival. In Rhapsody in Drew, she was called out to battle along with Beautifly against Harley's Cacturne and Banette. Together they managed to defeat their opponents and advance May to the next round.
Eventually, after journeying to the Johto region, May got Bulbasaur back from Professor Oak, and during her time away from Ash, she evolved twice into Ivysaur and Venusaur.
She debuted as a Venusaur in Pruning a Passel of Pals!, where she defeated a Marill for May in the second battle round of the Wallace Cup. Not much is known about Venusaur since she only had a cameo appearance.
Personality and characteristics
As a Bulbasaur, she proved to be a very sweet Pokémon. She was very willing to compete in Contests and do the best she could. She was very confident in most of her Contests. The only exception was her first Contest, in which her nervousness showed in her performance.
In Grass Hysteria!, she was shown to be very protective, as she helped protect May from all of the Pokémon that tried to attack her. In Hokey Poké Balls!, she was shown to be very friendly to other Pokémon, especially Ash's Bulbasaur.
She is also very fond of flowers. She became friends with Ash's Bulbasaur when Ash temporarily brought it to Hoenn in Hokey Poké Balls! and further bonded with it in The Right Place and the Right Mime, when May decided to leave her at Professor Oak's ranch.
She was distinctive from Ash's Bulbasaur in three ways: she had a gentler personality, a pair of heart-shaped spots on her forehead and she was able to use the move Petal Dance as opposed to Ash's Bulbasaur's use of the technique Solar Beam.
It is unknown whether she still holds on to these traits after evolution.
| Using Petal Dance|
as a Bulbasaur
| A † shows that the move was used recently, unless all moves fit this case or there are fewer than five known moves.
- Vine-Silver Wind was first used in a battle with Harley in Rhapsody in Drew as a Bulbasaur. She would use her vines and wrap them around the foe's foot and when she let go her opponent would spin. Beautifly would then use Silver Wind to accelerate them.
- Razor Leaf-Silver Wind was first used in a battle with Harley in Rhapsody in Drew as a Bulbasaur. She, alongside Beautifly, would use Razor Leaf and Silver Wind, making the two moves fuse in which they delivered the final blow against Harley's Pokémon.
- May's Venusaur is the only starter Pokémon owned by a member of the main cast that is seen in its final form and unevolved form, but never in its middle form.
- As of Venusaur, the entire set of fully evolved Kanto starter Pokémon is now owned by regular characters: May owns Venusaur, Ash owns Charizard, and Gary owns Blastoise.
- Though Bulbasaur have no gender differences in the games, May's Bulbasaur has little hearts on her head while Ash's does not, and has been confirmed female after her evolution.
- It is also one of the three Pokémon that appeared in the anime with a heart-shaped spot, the others being Spinda and Wooper.