West Farleigh in Bloom



West Farleigh in Bloom


West Farleigh entered the Village category of South and South East in Bloom for the first time in 2018 and we received a Bronze certificate which we were all very pleased with.


In 2019 we have once again entered the Village cateogry and also the Churchyard category additionally. We look forward to a colourful year ahead (and hopefully Silver!)


2019 Entries


If you would like to see our presentations to the South and South East in Bloom judges, please see both editions here:


Village 2019


Churchyard 2019

Read more about our floral efforts in the community:


The churchyard is looking good


Flower Arrangers at All Saints


Monthly Litter Picking


All Saints Plant Sale (Coming Soon)


Smiths Hall NGS Open Day (Coming Soon)

Read our Monthly blog about birds, animals and wildlife in West Farleigh by local resident Ray Morris.  Farleigh Feathers 

Read our Monthly blog about gardening by professional gardener Jon Fenlon.

This Month in the Garden




West Farleigh in Bloom monthly blog

Read through my latest blog posts and feel free to comment on them if you like.



Latest Posts

2019 Campaign Underway

Posted on 19th February, 2019
Hopefully by the time you read this there will be evidence of the bulb planting we did last November and there will be daffodils galore in West Farleigh – and hopefully crocuses too (although there isn’t much sign of them yet!)
We were delighted to welcome 5 new members to our group this month when we met discuss our entry into this year’s South East in Bloom and what we could do to better our bronze award last year.
One of the areas we didn’t score very well in last year was ‘conservation and biodiversity’ and with this in mind we plan to turn the triangle at the top of Teston Lane (which is proving exceedingly difficult to cultivate) into a wildlife area. We already have the bug hotel there and you may have noticed the two bird boxes we now have. We are planning another clean up of the area this month and hope to promote more wildlife to the area, for example dormice and reptiles.
The parish council kindly donated some money towards planters on the village green which will be coming soon.
As we got a special mention at South East in Bloom for our sunflowers we would like to encourage everyone to get involved again this year. Judging this year of the tallest sunflower will be in August, a litte later this year to give our sunflowers a chance to grow another few inches. We are happy to provide sunflower seeds to anyone who is willing to grow them – please just let the editor know and we will be in touch.
We are very excited as this year we are entering the churchyard into the competition – so we might come away with two prizes!!
A couple of dates for your diaries:
  • Sunday 12 May – Church plant sale – we will be making an appearance to offer cream teas and selling sunflower plants as well as bird and bat boxes.
  • Sunday 16 June – Fathers Day - following our successful Fathers Day walk with refreshments en route last year, we are planning to repeat this – but with a scavenger hunt as well this year.
Our aim is to make the village bright and colourful and we are very grateful to those villagers who have put out planters and planted bulbs on grass verges.

August - Sunflower Competition Winners!

Posted on 29th August, 2018

The Sunflower Competition is now closed and we have winners!


On Saturday 14th July, 2 of the West Farleigh in Bloom team visited every household in the village who had grown sunflowers in their front garden. There was an amazing 30 household entries and wonderful displays to be seen. We are so pleased that everyone participated so keenly. To see every entry, go to The Farleighs on our Facebook page.


Holly French from The Hollow won the tallest sunflower competition with a flower that reached 2.74meters tall.

Holly French 1



































Gabby King won the Best Display sunflower competition with her sunflowers all growing up the telegraph pole outside her house.

gabby king 








































Both won trophies to keep and commemorate their fantastic achievements. 

Thanks to all for entering.


Thank you to everyone in the village for their enthusiasm and support for our efforts so far, particularly the sunflower competition which attracted 30 household entries.  We want to keep up the momentum, and with some money in our bank account now thanks to your generosity for the walk and refreshment stops on Fathers Day, we have lots of ideas for next year.  Firstly we are going to buy lots of daffodil bulbs  to plant around the village for next spring.  We are having a planting day on Sunday 7 October and are targeting specific areas but also happy to supply bulbs for you to plant in your front gardens where they can be seen from the road. Watch this space for more details…


Jackie is going to attend the South East in Bloom Results Day in Brighton on 14 September to see how we have fared in our first year, and to have a sneaky peak at what our competitors are doing so we can be bigger and better next year!


One of our projects this year was to have a bug hotel built.  We are very excited to announce that the amazing bug hutch Tim Knowles has constructed for us has been placed on the triangle at the top of Teston Lane.  It has been built to specs mainly supplied by the R.S.P.B. It is all up cycled or reused material - bamboo tunnels to attract solitary bees and wasps,  plus two birds boxes, one either side and spaces for hedgehogs.


Your ideas to help enhance our beautiful village are always welcome.


The Bug Hutch

July - Judging Day!

Posted on 16th July, 2018

On Tuesday 3rd July, West Farleigh was visited by Peter Mountford and Jim Buttress who judged our efforts for this years South and South East in Bloom competition. (Earlier in the summer they had been judging RHS Chelsea!)


We produced a presentation for them detailing our route round the village with pictures and updates to address each of their marking criteria. Starting at The Tickled Trout we stopped at focal points along the way to meet people who had contributed to the team effort. First up was the bench opposite Smiths Hall with their wonderful new planters. We informed the judges about the sunflower competition in the village and explained our planting theme at the public areas was to always try to include some sunflowers there as well. We visited the island at the bottom of Ewell Lane which 1 of our kind volunteers had mended after a vehicle had driven straight across it earlier in the spring. Next stop was the Green where we met another 4 villagers, then the telegraph pole support for multiple sunflowers and the bench by Dandelion Time. We admired the planters outside Oliver North House and met more fellow ‘Bloomers’ at the bottom of Charlton Lane where more planters have been cared for. Up to the junction with Kettle Lane and the welcome to West Farleigh signs that are underplanted on the grass with another contributor who was able to tell the judges what a team effort we have made. Our final stop was at the Church to admire the Little Angels toddler groups planting and the arrangements of flowers inside.


The criteria of judging is Horticultural, Environmental and Community, however we wont find out our result until September. We have had a core group of 14 people this year and I’m sure we will gain high marks in the community section. We would like to continue the group so if you have an interest to join us you are very welcome. It has been very enjoyable this year with many new friendships made.


Sunflower Update: Tallest sunflower measurements have now happened. Best display will be judged on 26th July by the LifeLine ‘this month in the garden’ editor, Jon Fenlon. All winners to be announced after that date.

My goodness what a great day we had. With 4 refreshment stops around the village and walkers and cylists stopping off to see us we had alot of fun and raised an hugely impressive £227 for planting around the village. Our 'The Farleighs' Facebook events, Village email advertising and door to door mail dropped worked superbly!


There were cakes on the Green in the gazebo:

ramblers stop on the green



























 Jill, Brian, Claudia, Lesley, Terry, Cathryn & Sebastian


and hot drinks, tables and more cakes at Jackie & Simon's house near the church:


and further temptation in the form of 2 honesty boxes for biscuits at the bottom of Kettle Lane and near the Tickled Trout:















































Thank-you to everyone for such a great team effort. 

June - Ramble with Refreshments!

Posted on 4th June, 2018

What’s the idea….


We are hoping to raise money for permanent planting in our beautiful village of West Farleigh.


The village has entered the competition for 2018, but we still need to raise some money for plants for now and to keep it going into the future.


This walk is designed to show what we have already planted. It won’t take long to walk the marked out yellow route. There are 4 snack and refreshment points en-route with home made cakes & biscuits, Tea/Coffee and we’d appreciate your help by means of a small donation and do hope you’ll enjoy the walk around our village!


We hope to see many of you on 17th June 2018  (Father’s Day) any time between 10am and 1pm.


May - visit from Kent Wildlife Trust

Posted on 31st May, 2018

In early May, Kent Wildlife Trust were invited to West Farleigh to discuss ideas to promote animals, birds and insects and make the village more environmentally friendly.























Their 2 main suggestions included:

1. Focusing on Quarry Wood which is already a managed reserve, to ensure there are routes for wildlife from here to the River Medway. The suggestions they made were to use Ewell stream and Kettle Lane as this linked well and made a triangluar route.

2. They promote Verge Nature Reserves and suggested that the boarder of the Village Green could be wild flowers, just being cut twice a year. The grass cuttings could be given to Dandelion Time in the village who keep goats for extra feed and if cut just round its borders to ensure it is neat with a path through the middle it would be attractive as well.Suggesting seeing what comes up naturally year one and then adding seeds to it if needed going forward.


As we walked through the village they highlighted the wild array of natural beauty we are lucky enough to already have on our doorstep.




























































April Working Party

Posted on 23rd April, 2018

Sunday afternoon on April 22nd saw our working party target the Triangle at the corner of Lower Road and Teston Road. Luckily the land owner had kindly helped us out by clearing the brambles and generally tidying up the area ahead of our efforts to add some colour interest, as for many, be it residents or passing traffic this is the first area of the village they approach.


Our goal was to make the area more welcoming and interesting without being too distracting to drivers and to ensure we kept a clear line of vision all both directions. Being a site of past accidents we were cognisent not to offer more distraction!


We met at the house of the Rattens who kindly offered their driveway to help us bring a van with spades, forks and refreshements in. Fellow residents dug up snowdrops and bluebells in the green from their own gardens, bourght along summer bulbs and got to work picking up litter, large fallen wood debris and clearing soil for planting. Much to our surprise the soil was rich and very good for planting despite the shade from the tree canopy above.


Refreshments of homemade shortbread and tea had been arranged and neighbours came over to say hello and offer encourement too. We were pleased with our start and look forward to seeing the flowers grow. Our next working party is on Sunday 20th May. Should anyone want to come along you would be very welcome to join us.
























































April: Teston Lane Triangle

Posted on 21st April, 2018

On Friday 20th April Monty Don suggested that his Gardener's World viewers plant their sunflower seedlings this weekend. We whole heartedly agree! There seems to be quite a buzz in the village already around the Sunflower competition, however as a reminder - Tallest Sunflower competition in your front gardens as well as best Sunflower display visible to the road with judging this July. 


Please do fill out the below entry form so we know who is entering. If its possible to email it to editor@thefarleighs.co.uk or else drop the entry into The Good Intent pub on the green for us to collect:


Age Range

 Under 18

19 - 35

36 - 70



There are many ideas forming to add colour and support wildlife in West Farleigh. On Sunday 22nd April a working party is focusing their attention on the triangle that adjoins Lower Road up from Teston Bridge with the aim to add some colour. On Thursday 26th April Kent Wildlife Trust are visiting the village to look at the possibility of Roadside Nature Reserves and to give a tour of Quarry Wood. In the mean time BBC2 are also showcasing the Britain in Bloom competition at 6:30 in the evenings that may give us all some ideas as well.



Mar: Sunflower Competition

Posted on 10th March, 2018

This year West Farleigh has entered the South & South East in Bloom competition in the Village category. However large or small your inclusion in this event we want everyone to have fun and create a colourful impact for our neighbours, visitors and through traffic to enjoy. Therefore this spring we are launching 2 Sunflower growing competitions which we very much hope as many houses will join in as possible:

  • Tallest Sunflower – Who in West Farleigh can grow the tallest sunflower this summer? Please plant them in your front garden or bobbing over a garden wall. In July they will be judged for their height and a prize given for the tallest plant grown. Multiple entries per household welcome!
  • Best sunflower display – Sunflowers come in many varieties, not just the giant kind. We are sure that many smiles will be created when passing these potential displays. Judging will again occur in July.

As we will hopefully have lots of sunflowers in the village this summer, if anyone has any good recipes that use this sunny ingrediant please do share them with editor@thefarleighs.com.  Please do join in our efforts.


Another progress report from West Farleigh in Bloom will be available next month in LifeLine as well as updates on our Facebook page too.


2 links for sunflower ideas below: