Memory Lane – A memorable weekend in Belgium

Looking back….we can tell a tree’s story…..admire an image…..capture a moment…..remember a special event… inspired – to create a memory for tomorrow.

I hope you enjoy this regular peep into some of John’s bonsai history.

Memory Lane – A memorable weekend in Belgium (Part One)

This recollection is not too taxing on the brain… was only last weekend but it will trigger happy memories for many years to come. I was invited by Danny Use to exhibit trees in a show he was staging at the Gingko Bonsai Centre in Belgium. This was to be a show by his Kei Bonsai Kai group plus several invited friends.

This weekend was a chance to catch up with some old bonsai friends….both enthusiasts and trees! The camaraderie was the same and so reminiscent of the famous Ginkgo Bonsai Exhibitions. The exhibition itself was also like a breath of fresh air…..some old trees, some new ideas!

Some trees displayed against photographed backgrounds took the viewer on an interesting journey. A gravelled harsh landscape linked many trees displayed naturally with their pots hidden.

The diversity and quality of the trees on show was simply stunning. Yes there were Pines and Junipers……and stunning they were too…..but there were so many more varieties not often seen in exhibitions at this level.

This exhibition could hold it’s head high with the best of them…..but……it was not publicised aggressively in every corner of the planet, it was for one day only, admission was free, there were no misleading inappropriate demonstrations…….this was about a group of friends getting together to admire mature bonsai developed over many years …… enjoy the company of these trees and each other………to create memories that will linger for many years to come.

The first batch of pictures are set out below. Watch out for more pictures in parts two and three to follow.

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Studio Stories – Keith’s massive Field Maples!


Sometimes I work on nursery trees, sometimes I work on client’s trees……and sometimes if I’ve been a really good boy I get to work on my own trees. Hopefully these regular visits will give you an insight into what goes on behind closed doors……….

Studio Stories – Keith’s massive Field Maples!

I recently had the pleasure of doing a one to one with a student who wanted help repotting some big, big trees. These included two Field Maples ( Acer Campestre )

The trees had not been repotted for many years so I knew it would be quite a challenge. The sheer size of the trees and their rootballs made them difficult to handle and manoeuvre.

You can see in the pictures just how much root the trees had put on. The rootball had to be opened up and a selection/pruning made.

Once the trees were secured and settled in their new pots it was time to look at the tops. The trees had been allowed to grow and now needed some serious structural pruning.

New pots, new compost, roots sorted, tops sorted… these trees can move forward ……and they should develop much more quickly in to two very impressive trees!

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