Mirrors in the Garden – a Trend?

The first mirror in the garden I saw this past weekend was in one of the first gardens. I had already seen gardens with high brick walls that had ‘windows’ cut into them. When I glimpsed shining light in the wall in this garden I thought it was another windowed wall, which I thought was a charming idea.  When I scrunched down to get a better idea, and a photo I realized I was looking at a mirror. The photo is a little crooked because I had to bend down and under the dripping foliage to see the mirror clearly.  There were other mirrors in this garden. These urban Buffalo gardens all have walls, perfect for vines – and mirrors.

The second  mirror in the garden I saw was in Gordon’s rain drenched paradise. You have to look close to see the mirror because it is reflecting the variegated hostas.  There were other mirrors in this garden as well.

This is one of a series of three mirrors against a vine covered wall in Jim Charlier’s garden.  He said the mirrors are inexpensive so he doesn’t mind that they will rot away in the rain.  He has also built a kind of soffit out from the wall, which not only holds some of the vines, it hides a rope light (light rope?) which makes for a delightful effect at night – as do the three tiki lights reflecting in each mirror.  We garden bloggers were invited to lunch at Jim’s and we couldn’t see this effect, but everyone who has a copy of the current issue of Fine Gardening can see it in the Spice up the Night feature.

There is a saying that if you see three unusual things, or hear about the same odd thing three times in a row you are seeing the birth of a trend. I like this trend and I am going to look for a suitable wall.

Of course, if you happen to take a trip to the famous Buffalo Garden Walk, the country’s largest free garden tour, the last week in July, you might be able to notice other trends.  Have you noticed any new trends in your neighborhood gardens?

This Post Has 16 Comments

  1. Pat, until you noticed the trend, I didn’t think about it, but yes, mirrors were everywhere in the gardens. I loved meeting you and getting to sit together at one of the dinners.~~Dee

  2. Pat

    I loved everything about these Buffalo days, especially getting to meet people like you who were so willing to share information and expertise.

  3. Cyndy

    I think I first saw a garden mirror used in a book about the Little and Lewis garden on Bainbridge island – they seem particularly appropriate in smaller enclosed spaces to bring in light and the illusion of space beyond. I’ve got one propped up behind a fairy house in my woods 🙂

  4. Frances

    Oh how sad we were to miss seeing Jim’s garden, Pat. Thanks for showing this feature. Mirrors in small gardens, like mirrors in small rooms really expand the space and add light to both. Way to spot a fabulous trend we can all put to use in our gardens. 🙂

  5. Lisa at Greenbow

    I have seen mirrors in various gardens around here. I have looked for a spot for one in my garden.

  6. susan harris

    It was great meeting/spending some time with you over the weekend! S

  7. Kate

    I’ve not heard of this but I think it’s a lovely idea. Reflecting another side of my favorite flowers? I’m in!

  8. Cara Hochhalter

    And from I Corinthians: “For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then we will see face to face.”

  9. Pat

    Cyndy- Those mirrors seemed like mysterious windows to me.
    Frances – Jim’s house and garden were full of ideas.
    Lisa – You are ahead of me. I had never seen this lovely idea before.
    Susan – you remain an inspiration.
    Kate – Just think. It will double the size of your clumps.
    Cara – the thing we saw most clearly in the mirrors was the pleasure of new friends.

  10. Mary Schier

    I loved the way the gardeners seemed to be sharing ideas and strategies for making their relatively small spaces work. Great to meet you in Buffalo!

  11. Pat

    Mary – I loved seeing so many gardens with you, and getting good blogging advice too.

  12. Pam/Digging

    Mirrors in the garden are indeed lovely. I always worry, though, about whether they cause birds to crash into them, so I haven’t used one in my own garden yet.

    It was so nice to meet you in person, Pat. Hope to see you again next year.

  13. susan harris

    Pat, it was great meeting you in Bufftown! Keep in touch. Hugs, S

  14. hmmm… maybe it reflects the positive energy to the garden owner. 🙂

  15. Sandy

    I love the comment just before mine! Love the idea of gadsden mirrors reflecting positive energy. I’ve been using mirrors in my garden and on my patio for the past 3 years. I also have a couple mirrors on the front of my house that look like windows. Many of the neighbors have commented on how much they like them because it reflects the trees and gardens when they walk by. I’ve never had an issue with birds crashing into them.

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