Forum home Problem solving

How can I stop slugs and snails eating my Hosta?

Has anyone found a natural way to stop slugs and snails from attacking Hosta plants? I'm open to trying novel ideas if they work, I'm considering putting my bird feeder close to my Hosta's so that birds may find the slugs whilst eating fallen seeds, has anyone tried this? 

Last edited: 12 June 2016 20:01:25



  • Mark56Mark56 Windsor, BerkshirePosts: 1,653

    Only water in the morning, copper tape barrier around plant or pot, lamb wool pellets (best so far for me), beer slug traps, nematodes applied every 6 weeks (slightly more costly), night patrol with salt or scissors & encourage and attract wildlife like birds, hedgehogs, frogs, slow worms to the garden, spray plants with a garlic water solution image

    Last edited: 12 June 2016 20:03:37

  • KT53KT53 GloucestershirePosts: 7,563

    Are the hostas in pots or in the borders?  If in pots I've found putting sharp grit into the pots to be very effective.  I add slug pellets as a second line of defence.  I'm more interested in killing the slugs and snails than in worrying about natural methods.

  • jabsyjabsy Posts: 54

    Weirdly none of mine have been attacked.  I've put wool pellets around my sunflowers though and they've still been able to get over it and have a good munch on them, same with my meconopsis so they haven't worked for me

  • Thanks for the suggestions! The Hosta's are in the border. I'm wary about pellets as I have lots of birds in the garden and so I don't want them eating poisoned slugs! I'm going on a night patrol now, but will also try lambs wool! I'm going to try and encourage birds to have a rummage around the plants, hopefully they'll see the slugs!!! ☺

  • ZenjeffZenjeff Newcastle Upon Tyne Posts: 641

    In a different post I put that I put a circle of rock dust round plants eg this hosta and others prone to slug damage  no slug damage and adds minerals to the soilimage

    plated in border not pot 

  • AuntyRachAuntyRach Posts: 4,784

    Agree with mark56 (apart from scissors!?), although I haven't found any wool pellets to try yet. Beer traps are good but will not exclude all visitors. I don't use slug pellets as there are hedgehogs in my garden (although they clearly don't manage to eat all available slugs!) An extraction by torch-light is very effective if you can commit to that level of attention. Despite this, 2 out of 3 of my Hostas this year have been wounded and I still marvel at a slug's ability to climb a 3 foot plus sunflower! 

    My garden and I live in South Wales. 
  • Mark56Mark56 Windsor, BerkshirePosts: 1,653

    Good luck! Let us know which method you find most successful. Each slug seems to have different taste buds image numbers are greater this year because of the mild winter. AuntyRach i've read on here some believe it's less cruel to snip them in half but I'm more of a salt bucket fan myself image

    Last edited: 12 June 2016 22:17:47

  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 33,332

    Try scattering "suet treats" thinly around them. I did it for the first year when I moved here. Blackbirds will learn to rummage. Have a pond and encourage frogs and hedgehogs and don't have a cat.

  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 28,587

    My garden is far too big to mess with beer traps and there are too many hostas and other susceptible plants anyway.    I don't do slug patrols any more as, in spring, I'm out most evenings at dancing and I don't use scissors.

    I do use the wildlife friendly slug pellets to great effect although 10 straight days of rain means I now have a few holes in my otherwise pristine hostas.  I also have lots of birds, frogs and toads and no harm comes to them.

    Start scattering the pellets very thinly from St Valentine's Day (easy to remember) and continue weekly around susceptible plants only - do not turn the borders blue.    This system gets them as they emerge from hibernation or hatch from eggs and before they start to munch and breed.

    You need some slugs to recuycle dead matter and feed your frogs and toads so do be careful just to use protective measures around the plants that need it and not as a general blitz.

    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • I'm about to try out crushed eggshells. Has anyone else tried this? 

    My mum puts pennies around slug susceptible plants. 

Sign In or Register to comment.