Top 5 Tips for Attracting Gnomes to the Garden

A garden gnome
(Image credit: biglanphoto / Getty Images)

Gnomes, these nurturing yet stubborn garden entities have long been described as small, stout beings that usually reside underground. They care for the earth. They aid in the growing of things. They are protectors of animals and, apparently, gnomes like to travel. It has been said that the history behind gnomes is rooted in folklore and superstition, or is it. By implementing a few odds and ends around the garden, it is actually quite possible to entice these miniature little creatures into the area. Here are our top 5 tips for attracting gnomes to the garden.

  1. Plants - Plants are a surefire way to lure these little guys (and their companions) to the garden. Gnomes are especially attracted to plants that butterflies and hummingbirds Provide an endless assortment of wildflowers and herbs. Ferns, moss and other forest favorites, like bluebells, are a must have in your gnome garden. And don't forget to feed the little guys by providing some of their favorite food sources - nuts, mushrooms, potatoes, fruit, berries and honey.
  2. Accessories - Gnomes are workers, and although you might have seen one or two lazing about, it is only under the cover of darkness that they move around. In order to make the area more attractive to these magical beings, it is advisable to provide them with appropriate tools, like wheelbarrows and such, so they can work in the garden while you sleep. You may also want to fill the garden area with statues as well, as this helps let them know they are welcome. Gnomes are especially fond of fairy statues.
  3. Shiny stuff - Anything that is shiny or reflects light is attractive to gnomes. Gems of all sorts are a particular favorite. Gazing balls help them see into otherwise darkened corners of the garden. Likewise, they enjoy colorful objects as well as those that move, such as pinwheels and flags. Soft, soothing music may also tempt them for a visit, so be sure to add a nice wind chime or two.
  4. Hideaways - So we know that gnomes prefer to live underground. They are curious, secretive creatures and do not like being disturbed. With this in mind, offer them hideaway spots where they can hang out comfortably throughout the day, unseen and safe from wandering eyes. Large, upturned pots are an option as are logs and careful plantings that allow them to play hide and seek, or simply peek out now and then.
  5. Animal friends - As lovers and protectors of animals in the forest, gnomes are just as loving and protective of animal creatures in the garden. Add as many as you can to the area and they will come. Anything from frogs to squirrels to deer, rabbits and more will attract gnomes.

As you can see, there are countless ways to invite gnomes to the garden. With just a few tips and tricks, your garden will soon be booming with gnomes galore. Happy gardening and April Fools!

Nikki Tilley
Senior Editor

Nikki Tilley has been gardening for nearly three decades. The former Senior Editor and Archivist of Gardening Know How, Nikki has also authored six gardening books.