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Advice on slugs and snails?

We have problems with both slugs and snails eating lots of plants. We are new to gardening, so this is all a learning curve. We are reluctant to use any sort of chemical or harmful repellent products but saw an item on GW last Friday on the TV on hostas and the gardeners said they boil up garlic bulbs, sieve off the pulp, mix with water and spray on the plant to deter the beasties. We are going to give this a go. Have others had success with this? Any other safe, non chemical recommendations to deter (for any plants, not just hostas)? We have tried beer traps, but believe it or not the foxes have dug them up and we find the empty pots strewn over the garden! Any advice appreciated. Thank you.


  • ForTheBeesForTheBees Posts: 168
    I do frequent slug & snail checks at night but I have quite a small garden. I also have a lot of success with copper rings; I only put them selectively around the worst affected plants and they seem to do a job of diverting the S&S to plants I'm less concerned about.
  • We put wood chip around vulnerable plants to keep the slugs away, also a ring of gravel works well. Encourage hedgehogs into the garden, they often make a quick snack of the slugs.  Thrush enjoy eating snails or do as @ForTheBees suggested and collect the slimy visitors youself - much quicker.,
  • josusa47josusa47 Posts: 3,531
    "The Little Book of Slugs" can be ordered for £2-3 from the Centre for Alternative Technology, Machynlleth, and describes many wildlife-friendly ways of destroying and deterring slugs.
  • HelixHelix Posts: 631
    I saw the same programme and have cooked up a batch of garlic and applied it to our hostas.  So far so good, but may just be too hot for the little b**(s at the moment. 

    Normally I go for physical barriers and unpleasant surfaces (grit, coffee grounds etc). 
  • debs64debs64 Posts: 4,721
    For slugs I can recommend nematodes. Not the cheapest but I had lots of slugs and after applying some in 2017 the population has been greatly decreased. Worth a try 
  • Thanks all for the advice. @Helix did you spray the garlic water on the plants themselves and the soil around them too? My only fear is the garlic water might damage or kill the plants. We have tried the ground coffee but it didn't seem to work. Presumably the garlic is ok on all types of plants - we have very active and determined pests!
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