I think this is a case of upcycling.  I spotted the idea on a shoot of a garden in France on the recent BBC series on French Gardens and pinched it.

I am frequently coming across snail shells in the garden and I think they look much more natural than the various plastic or wooden things you can buy to stop you poking your eye out on a cane.  My son isn’t so keen as he thinks it looks like the snail has been impaled on the cane but then again he doesn’t have the upset of seeing snails munching your seedlings.