As the old adage goes, prevention is better than the cure – and this is certainly true when it comes to the gardener’s biggest enemies, slugs and snails. There’s nothing worse than finding your marigolds munched back to a bare stem or a slug trail leading to your vegetable patch. That is why it is vital to protect your plants and produce from slugs and snails before they ruin your garden. There are any number of ingenious ways to make your hard work in the garden off limits to these pests. You don’t have to invest in expensive pesticides to do the trick. Sometimes, simple solutions are the most effective.
- For example, did you know that ash and cinders are a highly effective deterrent? They act as a rough protective barrier and the fine ash dries out slugs. Ash from a fire that has burnt household waste should never be used, because it could contain toxic substances. Cinders and ash should be spread around the plant, but not touching it.
- Slugs are cannibals – they eat their own! So, if ever you come across a dead slug leave it. It will detract attention away from your plants.
Other ways of protecting your garden from slugs and snails include:
- Bark Mulch – A coarse mulch of bark not only deters slugs, it can look quite decorative. You can enhance the look of your garden while protecting your plants at the same time. Never use an organic mulch as this can harbour slugs.
- Beer Trap – This old gem still works as well today as it always has. Half bury a container in the ground and half fill it with beer. You will be amazed at how many slugs and snails, lured by the waft of alcohol, will navigate their way to their own demise. They creep to the rim of the container and topple into it. Tip: keep the container around one inch from the soil to prevent ground beetles from falling into the trap – they eat slugs.
- Dried Cat or Dog Food – A great, humane way to lure slugs away from your garden. They love dried pet food. Many gardeners describe this method as being like slug pellets without having to resort to lacing them with poison.
Follow our top tips to keep the slugs and snails from munching on your plants so that you can sit back in your garden or conservatory and watch your flowers flourish and bloom.
If you have found any top ways to keep the slugs and snails from ruining your plants then please leave them in the comments section or share them on our Facebook page.