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The World’s Tiniest Gardeners: How Garden Gnomes Became a Global Phenomenon

Becky - stock.adobe.com - illustrative purposes only

Ever find yourself wandering through a friend’s garden or browsing the aisles of a nursery only to be greeted by the watchful eyes of a pint-sized figure with a pointy hat?

Yes, those garden gnomes, standing proud among the petunias, have a way of popping up just about everywhere.

You might have one or two in your own garden, a gift from a quirky relative, or perhaps you’ve simply admired them from afar.

But while they might just seem like a fun and odd decoration, there’s more to these cheerful chaps than meets the eye.

Humble Beginnings

In the mid-19th century, a spark of inspiration hit a German sculptor named Philipp Griebel. He enjoyed crafting terracotta animals, and one day, it occurred to him to mold an entirely new figure: the garden gnome.

Griebel’s neighbors in the town of Graefenroda loved the idea. I mean, who wouldn’t want a cheerful little companion to watch over their flowers and shrubs?

These original gnomes were a nod to folklore, where gnomes were believed to protect underground treasures. Now, they were brought into the sunlight to become guardians of the garden.

Spreading Across The Globe

Becky – stock.adobe.com – illustrative purposes only

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