As judges declare the winners in this year’s Farnham in Bloom Secret Gardens competition, they have praised gardeners for producing displays that are “better than ever” despite a challenging summer of prolonged dry spells and heavy downpours.

This year’s judging saw a greater emphasis on environmental issues with judges looking for biodiversity and examples of good practice such as rainwater harvesting, peat-free compost, composting garden waste and supporting wildlife.

Councillor Sally Dickson, the Lead Member for Farnham in Bloom which is sponsored by The Farnham Institute Charity, congratulated all winners for their remarkable efforts: “Our judges were treated to displays of flourishing roses and border plants plus garden walls and fences curtained with scented white star jasmine. Deciding the winners across 10 categories has been a colossal but highly rewarding challenge.

“The judges reported how hanging baskets and patio pots looked fabulous with an abundance of colourful pelargoniums, begonias, petunias and golden creeping Jenny. There was also plenty of prime fruit and veg on display: tomato plants weighed heavily with fruit, and there were some luscious looking courgettes, lettuces, runner beans and French beans.”   

Among the winners is Frank Green who won the category for best hanging basket or container, and won Gardener of the Year in 2018. 

Other categories included best wildlife garden, best courtyard sponsored by The Patio Blackspot Removal Company Ltd, best vegetable garden, best large and best small garden as well as categories especially for business premises.

Judges thanked all those who entered this year’s competition and encouraged them to take part again next year. Over 40 gardeners were commended by judges. A full list is available on the Town Council website. 

Winners are invited to an awards ceremony next month at Squires Garden Centre in Badshot Lea where the winner of Gardener of the Year and the Madge Green Community Gardening Award will be announced. Madge Green was one of the driving forces behind Farnham in Bloom as well as a prize-winning gardener herself, flower arranger and journalist. She died in 2017. 

Three community groups are competing for the prize: space2grow, Phyllis Tuckwell Hospice Gardens and Get Growing @ The Bungalow at Hale Community Centre.

Notes to editors

The awards ceremony takes place on 10 October. 

The full list of winners is as follows:

Secret Gardens of Farnham Awards

Best Front, Back or Small Garden 

Commended

Nicola Hope

Nina Irlam

Highly Commended

Bartosz Kupisz

David Pink

Pam Epps

Patricia White

Peter Clark

Very Highly Commended

Brenda Guyver

Jacquie Heathcote

Bronze Award

Donald Larby

Silver Award

Nick & Susan Green

Gold Award

Leslie Wyld & Lorna Sutherland

Best Large Garden 

Commended

Alexine Crawford

Highly Commended

Andrea & Dave Wingent

Karen Tinson

Lionel & Clare East

Bronze

Anthony Hill-Reid

Silver Award

Max & Kate Lyons

Gold Award

Penny Drew

Best Hanging Basket/Container 

Commended

Mel Sefton

Highly Commended

Nick & Susan Green

Nicola Hope

Very Highly Commended

Jacqui Budd

Lionel & Clare East

Vivienne Gardiner

Bronze Award

David Pink

Silver Award

Ian & Beryl Webster

Gold Award

Frank Rhodes

Best Courtyard 

Bronze Award

Jacquie Heathcote

Silver Award

Ian & Beryl Webster

Gold Award

Jonathan Durham

Best Vegetable Garden

Very Highly Commended

David Pink

Nick & Susan Green

Bronze

Mel Sefton

Silver Award

Alexine Crawford

Gold Award

Martin Billett

Best Wildlife Garden 

Commended

Nina Irlam

Highly Commended

Alexine Crawford

Gold Award

Ian & Beryl Webster

Best Public House/Hotel 

Commended

Castle Inn

Highly Commended

The Queen’s Head

The Nelson

Very Highly Commended

Shepherd & Flock

The Six Bells

Bronze Award

The Lamb

Silver Award

The Hop Blossom

Gold Award

The Albion

Best Shop Front 

Silver Award

Classical Floral Designs

Gold Award

Castle Street Flowers

Best Business Premises

Gold Award

The Farnham Maltings

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