TONY TICKLE AND TERRY FOSTER VISITING MY GARDEN AFTER THE NOELANDERS TROPHY.

Hi everybody,

the Monday after this year Noelanders Trophy weekend my old and dear friends Tony Tickle and Terry Foster visited my garden before they would get on the boot from Europoort to England. This visit from Tony has become a real annual tradition this last decade or so and it is always something that we all look forward to. But this time was even more special because this time I had a special present waiting for Tony to thank him for all that he has done for me in the past. It was the now well-established air layer that I took 2 years ago from my big old Prunus mahaleb Yamadori. It has wonderful deadwood running all along its trunk and I am sure that Tony will make a stunning Bonsai out of it! It made me feel good to return the pleasure this time and I wish them both a happy future!

Below: Me and Tony and his Prunus mahaleb.

Cheers,

Hans van Meer.

Info: karamottobonsai@hotmail.com

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JUST POSTED MY SHORT VIDEO ABOUT ME ENTERING MY ILEX VERTICILLATA INTO THE 2018 EDITION OF THE PRESTIGIOUS NOELANDERS TROPHY!

Hi everybody,

just to let you all know that I just posted the short video that I made of me bringing in my Ilex verticillata into the XIX 2018 edition of the prestigious Noelanders edition! In it, you can see how my Bonsai is photographed for the commemorative book and how I build up my composition in the almost still completely empty enormous exposition hall on the Thursday before the show…to go short: things you don’t often see about a big Bonsai show like this is! So have a look and forgive me the not so good quality of the film…the lighting was still very poor then and I was very tired! But I still hope you like it?!

Cheers,

Hans van Meer.

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VIDEO OF MY SMALL GARDEN MADE BY MY DEAR FRIEND TONY TICKLE (UK).

Hi everybody,

my dear old Bonsai friends Tony Tickle and Terry Foster (UK) came last Monday straight from the Noelanders Trophy to visit my house, garden and for some light refreshments and a dinner and a lot of small and of course Bonsai talk! And although it was really freezing that day we still spend a lot of time looking at and discusing my Bonsai. Especially Terry was really interested in the (in his words) amazing ramification on my Yamadori Hawthorn named “LITTLE TONY”! And while we both were discussing it Tony was making a short impression video of some of my trees in the garden. It turned out nicely so I would like to share the link with you all so that you can get some sort of idea about my work and my tinny Bonsai garden. 🙂 I hope you enjoy it?!

Cheers,

Hans van Meer.

Info: karamottobonsai@hotmail.com

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PHOTOS OF THE DEMO WITH KUNIO KABAYASHI AT DESHIMA BONSAI STUDIO.

Hi everybody,

last Tuesday evening on the 30th of January I drove all excited to Nieuwekerk aan den IJssel (NL) for the evening demonstration and meet and greet with the great Japanese Bonsai Master Kunio Kobayashi. My dear friend Teunis Jan Klein (the owner and the proprietor of Deshima Bonsai Studio) had managed to get this superstar of Japanese Bonsai to do an evening meet and greet and a spectacular evening demo on Tuesday. And on Wednesday and Thursday, a daytime workshop for 8 people under the guidance of the Master followed by an evening traditional Japanese Kaiseki dinner with the master and his charming wife in the top Japanese restaurant Yama Cuisine in beautiful Rotterdam (NL). Teunis Jan has managed to organize something truly special and unique in the Bonsai world! I was regretfully only able to attend the evening demo…but boy o boy what a top evening it turned out to be! And what an amazing specimen demo tree did Teunis reserved for master Kobayashi his demo! It was a large field-grown Pinus thunbergii that he bought over a decade ago when he was in China for his work as a purchaser for a large Bonsai importer. Over those years he skillfully managed to get tons of new foliage all over the branches so there was plenty to work with for this demo! The tree has amazing bark and beautiful movement and was well fit for even a master like Mister Kobayashi is! After Teunis gave the audience some explanation how he went about to organize this 3 days event he introduced  Satoko Takagi the translator who would translate every word mister Kobayashi would share with us into Dutch. And then he introduced the two skilful assistance that would help the master that evening, the first one Hugo Zamoraluna from Mexico came along with Mister Kobayashi from Japan and the second one Ralph Oduber a student of Teunis Jan that has studied at Mister Kobayashi his school Shunka En in the past. While Teunis Jan was doing this Mister Kobayashi was already very busy at work lifting the heavy tree in all kinds of different angles like it weighed nothing and if he is not almost 70 years old and not just of the plain from a long flight from Japan…amazing!!! It was funny to see that Teunis had to call him to order to stop for a minute so that he could introduce him properly to us all! He received a hearty applause from the Bonsai enthusiasts and then he was off again to what he does the best and while he was answering all kinds of questions and explaining what he was doing, he and his helpers tilted the tree in the desired position and secured it with wire to the turntable and then started to cut off all unnecessary foliage and branches.

Below: Because I was at the same time shooting a video I started to make photo’s when they were already a few minuted selecting the necessary branches and cutting off the unnecessary foliage and branches. And that was all don in an enormously fast tempo! If you just look at all the foliage on the floor at this point then you can clearly see just how far they already were when I shoot this first picture!

Below: and more and more was cut off leaving only the necessary foliage.

Below: 70 years old?! I wish that I could sit on my knees like that and I am only 57 ?! 😉

Below: the assistance started to pluck needles and wiring while the master was cutting off even more foliage!

Below: wiring the branches and foliage. On the right, you can see a picture of how the tree looked just after Teunis Jan had bought it in China all those years ago.

Below: look how he amazingly is working with tree cutters in his right hand?! And still managed to wire small branches??? But he has hat a lot of practice doing Bonsai for 15 hours a day over the last 45 years! 🙂

Below: with every wire that is applied and branches that are positioned more and more beauty is revealed…like magic!!! 

Below: the growth could not control their selfs any longer when the whole top section was bent forward with the help of a special Bonsai tool! It was bent until some cracks appeared and then secured in place with some heavy copper wire.

Below: and below the amazing end result after some 3 hours of work. What an amazingly quick transformation into a very promising Bonsai! What a talented and skilful visionary is this very sympathetic, humorous and modest master! It was so inspiring to watch his every move from so close by! Thanks for a very memorable evening mister Kobayashi and Teunis Jan Klein and all the volunteers that helped that night in DESHIMA BONSAI STUDIO for making this all possible for us all!  

The 2o minutes’ video of this whole stunning transformation is in the making and will be posted on my own youtube KARAMOTTO Bonsai channel in a few days time so watch this space!!! 

I hope you enjoyed this for me special post of a unique Bonsai experience?!

Cheers,

Hans van Meer.

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MY BONSAI DISCUSSION AT THE “KOYA” BONSAI CLUB (NL). MIJN BONSAI BESPREKING BIJ DE “KOYA” BONSAI VERENIGING.

Hi, everybody,

yesterday I did a Bonsai discussion at my first Bonsai club “KOYA” that is located in Rijswijk the Netherlands. I became a member there way back in 1991 and stayed there for 6 or 7 years. During those years there I organized with Farrand Blog en Rene Rooswinkel (now from BonsaiFocus) en many volunteers from KOYA one of the first big Bonsai exhibitions in Holland! And I was head of the activity committee for a while. And last but not least, I gave there my first and second demonstration ever! That first demo tree was a garden centre “Chamaecyparis nana” that a few years later won the “Dutch Bonsai days” and was later shown at the very first “Ginkgo Awards” and the “Crespy Cup”! I have fun memories of this club so it was great to go back there after all these years to help and teach the new and old club members with there questions and to give advice about maintenance and styling. I was welcomed at the door by a beautiful (portable) Tokonoma with a very mature delicate Holm (Quercus Ilex) that you don’t see that often as Bonsai in our part of the world. It was accompanieth by a nice scroll with a winter image and a suiseki. I had a great afternoon and the day was over before we knew it! The reactions were very positive and we agreed that I would come back early next year to give a workshop! After all the hearty goodbyes I drove back home…tired but very happy! Thanks to all the members of “KOYA” for their warm welcome and trust! I hope to see you all soon again?!

Cheers,

Hans van Meer. 

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Hallo allemaal,

gisteren heb ik een Boom bespreking gehouden bij mijn eerste Bonsai vereniging “KOYA” in Rijswijk. Ik ben daar lid geworden in de begin jaren negentig en ben er zo’n 6 a 7 jaar gebleven. Gedurende die tijd heb ik met Farrand Bloch en Rene Rooswinkel (van BonsaiFocus) en veel vrijwilligers van KOYA een van de eerste grote Nederelandse Bonsai shows georganiseerd. Tevens was ik een tijd hoofd van de activiteiten commisie en ik gaf er mijn eerste en tweede domonstratie ooit! Die eerste demo boom een tuin centrum “Chamaecyparis nana” won een paar jaar later de land dagen en heeft nog op de “Ginkgo Awards” en de “Crespy Cup” gestaan. Onnodig om te zegen dat ik leuke herrineringen heb aan mijn tijd by KOYA, dus het was fijn om eindelijk weer eens terug te kunnen gaan om de leden te helpen met al hun vragen over de verzorging en het stijlen van hun Bonsai. Ik werd bij de ingang verwelkomt door een hele mooie portable “Tokonoma” met een hele mooie en volwassen Steeneik (Quercus Ilex) en een prachtige scroll met een winter motief en een goed bij passende Suiseki. Ik had een fantastische dag en hij was voorbij voor dat we er erg in hadden! De reacties waren erg positief en we zijn overeen gekomen dat ik begin volgend jaar terug kom om een workshop te geven. Na een erg hartelijk afscheid ging ik moe maar voldaan weer op huis aan. Bedankt “KOYA” voor jullie vertrouwen en warm welkom en hopenlijk tot volgend jaar maar weer?! 

Bonsai club “KOYA” Tokonoma.

Cheers,

Hans van Meer.

Info: karamottobonsai@hotmail.com

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I just posted “The ten-years story of an Itoigawa Tanuki Bonsai” on YouTube.

Hi, everybody.

I just posted my latest video “The ten-years story of an Itoigawa Tanuki Bonsai” on YouTube!!! It is a video in pictures and words and shows the story of a found beautiful piece of Yew deadwood and a 3 years old small Itoigawa cutting that fused together over a period of ten years became a promising pre Bonsai! Go have a look if you are interested and let me know what you think?!

Cheers,

Hans van Meer.

Info: karamottobonsai@hotmail.com

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GREAT NEWS!!! 26 May 2018. Second edition “KEI BONSAI KAI” ten and ten “DANNY USE & FRIENDS” in “GINKGO” Bonsai center in Laarne Belgium!!!

GREAT NEWS!!! On Saturday 26 May 2018 Danny & Ingrid Use from Bonsai center “GINKGO” in Laarne Belgium will stage the second edition of the amazing “KEI BONSAI KAI” TEN and TEN “DANNY USE & FRIENDS” in Laarne Belgium!!! First of all there is Danny’s huge world class private collection to see and like in the first very amazing edition in 2016 Danny his loyal students from “KEI BONSAI KAI” will show literally hundreds of there best Bonsai in amazing arrangements through out the whole “Ginkgo” Bonsai center! And like if that would be not enough?! Just like before Danny also invited many of his old Bonsai friends from the famous and legendary “GINKGO BONSAI AWARDS” series  to show there best work!!! And I am once again very honored and proud to say that I am one of them! 🙂 This great news was told to me last week when after a to long time I finally was able to visit my old and dear friends Danny and Ingrid again in their wonderful Bonsai center!

As always we were warmly welcomed as lost friends and during a cordial conversation and coffee Danny told me about his plans for the new Show and invited me to be a part of it again. Well I wholeheartedly sad YES!!! I WOULD LOVE TO!!! Even if this upcoming edition is half the success and the fun of the first one…well than I would still love to be a part of it all!!! If you love Bonsai? Well than you simply cant afford to miss out on this opportunity to visit this amazing “GINKGO” Bonsai center were everything you ever need or want in Bonsai is for sale + the change to see hundreds of some of the best Bonsai in Europe!!! Ow and did  I mentioned that there is a hug indoors rebuild wooden american roadhouse bar for drinks and snacks!!! 😉  I hope to see and meet you all there!

Here you can see two video’s that I shot during the first edition in 2016:

Cheers,

Hans van Meer.

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