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Talkback: Snails in the garden

Well some interesting comments above, I have had huge problems with my potted herbs especially the tender leaves of my basil... which have now been consumed by an army of snails. I have put copper round the pots, but this has not stopped the little buggers and have now resorted to extermination... its either my tender young cabbages or the snails!

I'm going to try scraping a decent slice of topsoil of the the edges where they seem to congregate in the hope of destroying or certainly disarming the hidden problem of snail eggs. I'll let you all know if it helps.



  • I have had a lot of slug and snail damage to my crops this year on my allotment. I tried egg shells and coffee grounds, but in the end I had to use slug pellets . I tried to buy organic pellets from a local garden centre but was told they did not stock them. On one of the Gardeners World programms Monty Don told us about some pellets which were Organic and they were advertised in the magazine. So I rang up the company and ordered some. So far they seem to be working, as the plants I have treated with them are still going strong. Thank you Monty. Eve.
  • I too have problems with slugs + snails, as i have a lot of frogs in the garden which i love dearly, i can't use pellets as i don't want to poison the wildlife! so i go out at dusk, or later with a torch and hand pick all the slugs + snails and each night there are dozens of them and they seem faster then too, i find them munching on my lily flowers and my Dalilas. at this time all the frogs are out as well. magical!!
  • I throw mine onto the garage roof so that the birds can get them!
  • This last month snails and slugs have reeked havoc in my garden eating most the leaves of my sunflowers giant singles,they've stripped them bare from bottom to top at first i tried beer traps but they just turned their noses up at the offer then i bought pellets still to no avail,they seem to weave in a out of like michael schumaker on a race track knowing were every obstacle is then i just try to slow them down by putting them in the middle of my tonne bag of sand i have left over from my patio but they seem to think its a game and play leep frog over each other can someone help
  • My garden is overrun with snails and slugs. They seem to be able to parachute into plants like tradescantia and hostas despite all my efforts to set up barriers! I heard recently that there is a shortage of snails in France and that they are missing their favourite gastronic delight. Is there an address I could send my supply to?
  • I agree with Richard and others.
    You have to be pragmatic - if the choice is between plants and snails use pellets But like most things in life there is no right answer I use a combination of hand picking and targeted use of pellets ( you need many just in the right place)
  • We have troughs attached to the wall with brackets, we put grease around the brackets, so all our vunerable plants stay protected, it seems to work! The same with the haning baskets, we grease the bracketa that are holding them up. My five year old son has just comments he likes slugs as birds like to eat them, so there you go!
  • I had the pleasure of watching a young thrush in my garden this morning eating a snail. Plants that are more prone to snail/slug damage such as hostas, I tend to keep in pots on an area of gravel. Otherwise I try to let nature keep the balance (although the mouse that ate my lily bulbs sorely tested my tolerance)!
  • Hi, I have been having trouble with slugs this year, and recently a Hedgehog somehow has come into my walled garden, which has considerably reduced the population of slugs and snails. Can you advise me please how to care for the Hedgehog, can we feed them, to encourage them to stay in my walled garden over winter?.
  • Hi Dave, the important thing to remember with hedgehogs is to not give them milk, it dehydrates and kills them. They do like cat and dog food, but this can turn them into fussy eaters and stop them from feasting on your slugs and snails! The best thing to do is leave a dish of water for them at all times, and consider investing in, or making a hedgehog shelter for them to hibernate in over the winter months (if you do it now it will give the hedgehog time to get used to it and make it more likely that it will move in over winter - and then to have babies in the spring!). You can buy special hedgehog food to leave for it over winter, and the British Hedgehog Preservation Society is a good place to start when dealing with sick, injured or underwight hedgehogs. Good luck! Kate
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