A collection of the many pictures that I made over the last years.

Above and below: In May of 2008, I was invited to come to the U.S.A to give Bonsai workshops and demo’s in 3 different states. The first state I visited was beautiful Oregon. Where on my day off my friendly host Jason took me up to the Japanese Garden! I say up because it is situated on a steep mountainside in Portland! These pictures were made with an old, not too good camera, but they game out good enough to show them to you.

Above: The mighty rivers the Rijn and the Maas come together to form the Hollands Diep, which further on becoming the Haringvliet that runs past our little island Hellevoetsluis! All the next sunset pictures are shot just a 5 minutes walk away from my home on the banks of the same Haringvliet. I only have to walk through a few short streets to reach the several meters high and many kilometres long dike that protects the whole of south Holland from flooding by the rivers and the sea! I actually have to climb stairs to get up this dike and then down the stairs again to reach the small patch of land and a small beach that lies in front of this Haringvliet! This is always very confusing for my foreign friends when I take them for a walk along the seaside! They often ask: do you have to climb stairs to get to the beach?! Ower house on the safe side of this massive and many miles long dike is built just around sea level! But when it storms or with high water it actually lays below sea level! Standing on this shore where these pictures are made and looking to the right you can see the world-famous Haringvliet dam that holds out the mighty Noordsea! It can be opened or shut-in sections. In the picture above you can see that one of these sections is open to let in saltwater so that saltwater vis can swim in and out to spawn. I hope you enjoy these pictures of this unique and often magical place?!
Above: 7-1-2009. “Haringvliet partly frozen”.
Above: 7-1-2009. “Swans in partly frozen Haringvliet”.
Above: 18-4-2009. “Larch in bloom”.
Above: 28-09-2009. Mushrooms growing next to my old Pinus parviflora.
Above: 15-12-2009. “Lighthouse at Haringvliet in Hellevoetsluis”.
Above: 15-12-2009 “Winter Sunset I” Haringvlliet in Hellevoetsluis.
Above: 15-12-2009 “Willow Sunset” Haringvliet in Hellevoetsluis.
Above: 15-9-2009 “Winter Sunset II” Haringvliet in Hellevoetsluis.
Above: 17-12-2009. “Willows” at Haringvliet in Hellevoetsluis.
Above: 17-12-2009. “Willow” at Haringvliet in Hellevoetsluis.
Above: 17-12-2009. “Willow & Sunset” Haringvliet in Hellevoetsluis.
Above: 17-12-2009. “Haringvliet in Hellevoetsluis”.
Above: 17-12-2009. “Haringvliet in Hellevoetsluis”.
Above: 20-12-2009. “Haringvliet in Hellevoetsluis”.
Above: 20-12-2009. “Haringvliet in Hellevoetsluis”.
Above: 1-1-2010. Location: Near “Rockanje” in South-Holland, some 15 minutes from my home. This is a pictures of a small lake named “Tenella lake” that is situated near this smal town. This lake lies in a rare wet dune forest named: Quackjeswater.
15-2-2010. Above and below: Swans hibernating in a small lake close to where I live.
Below: 17-12-2010. Pond with island in “Rockanje” in South-Holland.
Below: 17-12-2010 “Tenella lake” in Winter time.
Below: 17-12-2010 “Tenella lake” in Winter time.
Below: 17-12-2010 “Tenella Lake” in Winter time.
Below: 17-12-2010 “Tenella lake” in Winter time.
Below: 17-12-2010 “Tenella lake” in Winter time.
Below: 12-4-2011: Bumblebee on my Blackthorn.
Below: 17-12-2010 “The Quackjeswater wet dune forest” in Winter time.
Below: 4-2-2012 “Tenella lake in winter time”
Below: 4-2-2012. This is where the Quackjeswater wet dune forest finaly reach the beach of the North sea that was here partly frozen!
Below: 4-2-2012. The North sea partly frozen.
Below: 4-2-2012. Cold Robin near “Tenella Lake”.
Below: 11-7-2012. I was more than proud to take pictures at the fairytale wedding of my two lovely nieces.
Below: 9-10-2012. Butterfly on Juniper deadwood.
14-10-2012: Below. The beauty of medicinal herbs.
14-5-2015: Below. Little lost Blackbird seeking shelter from the hot sun.
14-5-2015: Cosy and safe under need my old Hawthorn.
8-10-2015: Spider sunbading in my garden.
Below: 8-12-2019: Wetlands along the seaside of the long dike. Thousands of births of different species spend the winter or live here permanently. In the distance, you can just see “Goeree overflakkee” the next big island of Zeeland.
Below: 8-12-2019: These small windmills pump water to the sea and make sure that the water level in the many small channels those not get to high.
I hope you enjoyed my pictures?!
Cheers,
Hans van Meer.

Pictures of two of mine old Hawthorns with red berries.

Hi everybody!

Yesterday I made some pictures of two of my old Hawthorns with red berries that I would like to share with you all! Although they have somewhat larger leaves than usual from all the water that I had to give during last Summers 3 months of record-breaking temperatures and that I had to remove some half – burned leaves, I still wanted to take some pictures of them because they are so pretty with these bright red berry’s and to show that they are so resilient and strong as a specie! These two are both collected by me in beautiful Walles during the second half of the nineties and since then I have always worked with great pleasure with them! I hope you like them as much as I do?!

This first one in the not so often seen Literati style is 68cm/27inch high and has stunning rare old natural deadwood/shari spiralling around the whole length of the trunk! The living bark on the trunk has deep dark cracks running from bottom to top and shows great age! It was collected in early ’97 on my second trip to the UK as the guest of Tony, Terry and Mike! I later potted it just like I was advised to do by mine experienced friends…but nothing happened during the later anxious months?! So I called Tony in a panic for help and his words were: don’t throw it away and keep it sheltered and make sure it doesn’t dry out! They often skip a year after collecting! So just wait and see…and pray! And boy how I was happy when a year later it started budding like crazy! They sure are amazing survivors and pretty easy to maintain as a Bonsai! Over the years I had the big honour to show her in several big shows like the Ginkgo Awards and The Noelanders Trophy and in 2009 she even made it on to the cover of the “American Bonsai and stone appreciation magazine!” How cool is that?! And she is still going strong to date!!!

Below: Because of the way too-large leaves and the berries, the top looks too heavy…but it is normally way lighter and just right. The pot that normally suds it perfectly was specially custom made for her by my dear old friend Brian Allbright (UK).

Below: This second Hawthorn was collected in ’96 on my very first collecting trip to the UK…as a matter of facts: my first collecting trip ever! I was invited by Bonsai live long friends Tony Tickle and Terry Foster and boy what an adventure it was for this Bonsai rookie! This one has also been proudly shown in many shows over the years and she gets more and more beautiful as she gets older! It is 43 cm/17 inch high. The pot was a gift from my old friend and great Bonsai artist and potter Dan Barton (UK) that I proudly received when I was a guest in his house. It was a pot from his personal collection and I am more than proud to show his gift under this for me already important tree!


I hope you enjoyed these images of these my old Lil’ Hawthorn friends?! Stay safe everybody!
Cheers,
Hans van Meer.

Old picture of my tiny Pinus thunbergii corticosa Shohin.

NO, NO!!! Don’t worry! Picture of my tinny Pine!😎 I am just fine, believe me!🤣

Like I wrote earlier in THIS post: in the early Nineties, the 6 of us went on a long route trip to Milan Italie to see among others Mr Kimura his demo an amazing Bonsai event and a very long visit to the world-famous Crespi Bonsai Center that is located just outside off Milan. And during our long visit to Crespi, I fell in love with a really tiny and weird-looking Japanese thunbergii corticosa that from memory was about 15 or 16cm high and because of its plates-like bark that grew wider upwards to the top and created that way a reverse taper! And then the very few tiny branches with just a few too long needles on the end! The small collection of Shohin were displayed on a few shelves behind chicken wire against one of the sides of the enormous greenhouse filled with mouthwatering Bonsai! Especially for us then still a couple of newbies! So I just had to buy it to see if I could realise what I saw in this little unique gem?! I simply broke off the too-long top bark-plates and allowed the smaller bottom once to extense. A few years later it was ready to be planted in this very small Tokoname pot that where he lived happily in for many years! That little pot fitted in the palm of my hand! It was shown in several shows. Later on, it was sold or given as a present to a Bonsai friend? Getting old and stuff and too many Bonsai memories to remember all! 😇
Cheers,
Hans van Meer.

Pictures of my little “Twister” Blackthorn Yamadori (Prunus Spinoza).


The Little Bonsai from this story was a wonderful gift from my dear British friend Terry Foster when I stayed at his home many many years ago! He pointed out some, especially in those early days, amazing Yamadori Blackthorns and said: pick one!🥳 So, of course, I went for the odd one out! This little wonder of nature must have been suffering from prevailing winds from the sea and that forced him to grow upwards in a spiral-like way like one of those old barber pools from yesteryear! And above that, it had amazing old wrinkled bark and deadwood that makes his crown look like an Ant Queens head! So my choice was made! This Blackthorn in this small pot is a slow grower and it took a very long time to create these branches and foliage but it is slowly getting there! Heigt: 30cm/12inch.

Stay safe and take care of each other!

Cheers,

Hans van Meer.

Working on my old Yew Shohin Yamadori named “Little Terry”.

Today we had the first day or afternoon of rain since the crisis started! All this time we were scared as shit…but with lovely weather! So many Bonsai tasks where don during the last months while getting a nice tan! Among others cutting/pinching back the spring growth off my 4 Taxus baccata Yamadori. As well as some branch trimming, wiring and checking for those damn scale insect!

The little Shohin Yew of this story was a wonderful Yamadori gift from my dear old friend and super talented college Terry Foster when I visited his house in 1999. Now more then 2 decades on it is still a tiny Bonsai of just 21 cm in height in a custom made Bonsai pot by my old friend Brian Allbright (UK). Say HELLO TO MY LITTLE FRIEND!!! 👋😉


Stay safe and healthy everybody!
Cheers,
Hans van Meer.

My “Mother and Child” Dutch Yamadori Hawthorn in full bloom.

All my “Dutch” and “Wales” Yamadori Hawthorns had an abundance of fragrant flowers this year as if they wanted to bring some much-needed joy in these troublesome times! But none so much as my Dutch Hawthorn in the “Mother and Child” style! Her coming into full flower was over the last 6 weeks daily filmed and photographed to try to make a time-laps video for YouTube! Dutch Hawthorn Yamadori are rare and the ones with deadwood are even rarer! This originally some 2 meters high one that I collected in a wet-dune forest close to my house was used by the buffalos as a scratching pole leaving a long Shari/deadwood running along the whole trunk section! And now some 2 decades later she shows maturity and all these flowers and tells a story of a Japanese Mother in Kimono hanging into the storm protecting here child under her arm.

Below: an explaining drawing that I made years ago.

Below: And this is how they looked a few days ago I am really proud of this one! Height: 75 cm/30 Inch. Pot: Japan.

Below: Bonsai peace and joy in scary times! Stay safe everybody!!!

Cheers,
Hans van Meer.

Pictures of my small Hawthorn.

This little Hawthorn was collected by me in 2007 in Wales (UK).
Below: Here are two before and after pictures from 2008 when I had just cut of all but four branches in its first styling

februari-2008-127-hans-van-meer.jpg

Below: This picture was made just after her very drastic hair cut! All wounds were sealed with cut paste!

februari 2008 352 Hans van Meer

Below: And this is the picture that I shot this afternoon in the makeshift foto studio in my living room. The custom made pot is by my dear friend: John Pitt. Height: 43cm

Why am I so proud of this little Hawthorn? Wel not only because it has turned into a well established Bonsai in such a short time, but more because of its amazing ramification! I have several collected older Hawthorns from the same Wales aria in my collection and they are treated and pampered just like this one but none of them comes even close ramification wise?! Hawthorns are notoriously slow branch growers, so this little one is probably that famous one in a million! And I am not complaining! I hope you like the picture as much as I do?!
Cheers,
Hans van Meer.

One of my resent pictures made it into our newspaper as “the picture of the week”!

One of the pictures that I shot and posted here a few weeks earlier made it into our local newspaper ‘Groot Hellevoet’ as the picture of the week! How cool is that!

This picture of the sunset and birds was shot by me from the dyke just a 5 minutes walk from my home. The people from the newspaper called it ‘a fairytale picture’! I am really proud of this honour! 🙂

Cheers,

Hans van Meer.

I finally went out again to shoot some pictures!

Thinks are looking up of late for me so I concluded that I had to make good use of that fact and duck up my camera and lenses once again! After just a 15 minutes walk from my house I reached the many meters high and many kilometres long dyke that protects our house and most of the south-west of Holland from flooding and was just in time to take some pictures of birds settling down for the night in the stunning setting sun! Some turned out so nice that I decided to share them with you all and I hope you like them as much as I do?!
Cheers,
Hans van Meer.

I will be posting some more Bonsai stories here soon as well as on YouTube! So keep watching this space!
Cheers,
Hans van Meer.