Slugs and snails - help needed!!

Hi everyone,

 

Never thought I would ever post in a gardening forum in my life but here goes!

My fiance and I bought our first home 2 years ago and have completly redecorated, included doing up the garden.

Last year we noticed whatever we planted ended up lasting roughly 24hours before being munched by slugs and snails!

This year we took measures to try and combat the problem but I think it's a tad out of hand and really I would really like some advice!

We have researched plants which do not attract slugs and snails which we planted out - they have been eaten.
We have put out beer/yeast traps which work on a tiny proportion of the nasties!
As a veterinary nurse I refuse to use slug pellets as even the 'animal friendly' ones can cause domestic pets to die!  Plus with out neighbours cat roaming our garden I just don't think it is safe.
Considered salt but know this will damage the soil/plants.

Last night alone just after dark our slug hunt landed us well over 100 slugs and snails!  This morning I have checked the garden and all of the plants I put out on Monday have gone!  Literally there is nothing left!

I think they are coming from within the Ivy between us and our neighbour. I am reluctant to tear this down as I know there is not really a suitable fence between us and I like the privacy it offers!

Can anyone please help me as at the moment we are wasting our money trying to have a nice garden!!!!
Many thanks!!

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Posts

  • Alina WAlina W Posts: 1,445

    Night time hunts are the most effective way, I'm afraid, but you do have to repeat them nightly for a few weeks to have any significant effect.

  • sotongeoffsotongeoff Posts: 9,806

    I keep saying this and don't what to get in to an argument- especially with a veterinary nurse- but slug pellets if used properly will not hurt any animal especially cats or dogs they would have to eat hundreds and that surely is unlikely.

    You obviously have a huge problem and  pellets are a sure way of controlling them-they are called wildlife friendly because they are- that is if you don't want to use the blue ones.

    Bran apparently works as a deterrent also but I have never tried it.

  • FloBearFloBear Posts: 2,281

    And you could research nematodes. I think one of the products is called nemaslug.

  • Gary HobsonGary Hobson Posts: 1,892

    I agree that a regular night-time hunt is the most effective control. Though, personally, I walk round first thing in the morning (too busy watching telly at night); that's not quite as effective as nighttime, but I find it more convenient, and it saves having to use a torch too. It still works, and I have almost-pristine hostas and lupins.

    If they have an attractive home nearby, then you do have a problem. Perhaps some kind of physical barrier is needed. Growing vulnerable plants in pots or tubs is another solution.

  • Personally I feel that thinking that hand-picking will make one iota of difference to the slug/snail population is living in dreamland.

    Try 'Slug Clear', liquid slug killer....the thing that gets deaded, is the target species.

  • I meant to say 'the only thing that gets deaded'....nice if the edit button worked! image

  • Alina WAlina W Posts: 1,445

    It would be, wouldn't it? image

    As for hand-picking - that's what we did in our front garden, and it really made a big difference. Well, at about 80 slugs a night for a whole summer, it had to!

  • I suppose it depends on the size of your plot, Alina.

    Given the size of my own garden, if I went out after dark, it would probably be daylight before I got to bed. image

  • SapSap Posts: 1

    Encourage birds to live in the garden, nest boxes, low growing ground cover, a bird bath and feeding table, a few bushes and maybe a small tree. They will restore the balance and also you will be helping the general environment.

  • Gary HobsonGary Hobson Posts: 1,892

    Total plot size is irrelevant. You simply need to check over the places where vulnerable plants are situated. I have a very large garden. I simply check my lupins, hostas, and also strawberries. I don't find that slugs are a noticable problem anywhere else. I'm sure there are plenty, but they are not a problem. And of course, hedgehogs, birds and frogs will take out a good number.

    Here's one of my hostas... no pellets... no weird solutions... just a regular check...

    http://i849.photobucket.com/albums/ab51/falcosubbuteo/slug-free-hosta.jpg

     

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