There are many, many suggestions on how to deal with slugs and snails. But how successful are these?
I think I’ve tried most of them! So, here’s a list of some of them, and my experience.
200 slugs per metre
Let’s start with a few facts about slugs and snails.
Humans are inclined to forget the latter are just the former with a house on their back. Possibly it is this that makes them somehow seem less repellent. Or perhaps we just all think of Brian on the Magic Roundabout.
If slugs could employ a publicist to help their reputation, they would point out that by helping in the process of decomposing vegetation, they do play a big role in nature.
Unfortunately, rather than sticking to our compost heaps, they munch on the plants, fruit and veg we’ve worked so hard to grow. And are adept at finding their way at night into basement flats and anywhere with dog food.
And a cubic metre of an average garden is likely to contain up to 200 slugs.
An A-Z of supposed slug/snail killers and deterrents
Ok, actually a B-D, with an S chucked in.
No. No. Never. Those bright blue things that contain metaldehyde may kill a percentage of slugs. But they are also a danger to wildlife, pets, and the stuff ends up in our drinking water.
They attract slugs, which presumably die happy. The downside is that if you don’t empty them for a couple of hot days, they are pretty disgusting.
Broken egg shells:
Degrade naturally into the soil and do provide a barrier slugs seem reluctant to cross. Downside: looks odd, and you need to eat a LOT of eggs.
Another surface deterrent. Downside: doesn’t last long in the rain.
Gives slugs a slight electric shock. Downside: expensive. On a bed, slugs can just go under it.
The cheaper option. ‘Bargain’ shops sell it for £1 for two metres. Downside: it’s ok round pots, but no use on a veg bed.
Another barrier that seems to have some effect. Downside: only an option if you have a long-haired dog!