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Snails are eating all my vegetables.

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dragonrider

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Due to excessive rainfall this year, my kitchen garden is now infested with snails. They are eating away all my vegetables.

I don't realy want to use poison, but i'm getting a bit desperate.

Does anybody here know an effective way to get rid of these slimey pests?
 
My grandpa used beer to lure them in the garden. If the snails won't take your catch, you can take it yourself. You can get rid of your sorrows either way...
 
I tried copper wire and it did not work, last year I barely ate any of my strawberries. This year for some reason I've not had any so I've been able to harvest most strawberries intact.

I've read about using beer to attract/kill them, or eggshells they don't like walking on, or salt (though that'd be blown off by wind or water and if it's a lot and goes to the ground might hurt the plants).. Never tried any of these tips though.

One thing that did help is simply going in the evening around the veggie garden when they show up and removing them manually.. Didn't remove them all I'm sure but seemed to reduce the problem.

Good luck, and let me know if anything works!
 
Get some hedgehogs somehow. Having ground cover and piles of twigs etc. encourages hedgehogs - although it also encourages slugs and snails equally much. Song thrushes like to eat snails so try to exterminate all the cats in your area /jk (?) Thrushes tend to use a large stone as an anvil for breaking the snails' shells.

With the recent wet weather, my garden has become overrun with large orange slugs. One evening it was possible to count over two dozen of them without much effort. My late strawberry harvest has been written off completely, although it's the smaller slugs and the woodlice that I typically find there. I guess the bigger slugs can't hide inside a hollow strawberry, however.

The big slugs are pretty interesting. They sometimes eat the small slugs, as well as dead members of their own kind. This means that stepping on one large slug will attract several more and the process could in principle carry on indefinitely. I do get a bit worried about the possible slugzilla zombie apocalypse though.

If planning to eat snails, apparently it's best to keep them in a tub of bran for a few days to clean out their digestive system.

If gathering snails, bear in mind that their shells can be roasted to produce lime for extraction experiments - although you'd need a LOT of snails.


Here's an article that may be of use:
pine, cedarwood and hyssop essential oils are the most effective at repelling slugs.
 
I Am a market gardener. For me the most effective way
Is collecting them after sunset - several days and they are off.
And keeping the garden clean. Wild herbs and graminacae are ideal spots
For them to hide. For me the only working solutions.
 
Won't diatomaceous earth alkalize the soil?

This year has been a snail bonanza for me too. They particularly love the leaves of my calamondin and Meyer lemon, and the flowers of the latter too.
 
Thanks for all the tips.

I'm hunting snails twice a day now, in the morning and in the evening, and their number is decreasing day by day.

They like apples, i've noticed. I've got a small appletree, and whenever an apple falls out now, i'm just gonna let it lie there.

There's always something like ten of them on and around each apple.
 
If you have the time, the space and fun with it, you could integrate Anas platyrhynchos domesticus in your garden. They love slugs.
 
dragonrider said:
Thanks for all the tips.

I'm hunting snails twice a day now, in the morning and in the evening, and their number is decreasing day by day.

They like apples, i've noticed. I've got a small appletree, and whenever an apple falls out now, i'm just gonna let it lie there.

There's always something like ten of them on and around each apple.
Ah yes, slug bait. I forgot to mention, when I had some mushrooms growing on woodchips in the garden I would leave a few halves of potato to keep the slugs off the carpophores. The hollowed-out potatoes would become slug hotels and make for easy pickings. With your apples it sounds like even that effort is spared.
 
Slugs and snails, destructors of crops and gardens, could be controlled by bread dough

Mc Donnell and his collaborators haven't determined yet why bread dough—a simple mixture of flour, water and yeast—attracts slugs and snails, but theorize that it is the fermentation process that draws them. They used a range of food in addition to bread dough to determine which would be the most attractive bait, including beer, cucumber, lettuce, strawberries, citrus, tomatoes, hostas and Marmite (a yeast-based food product popular in Great Britain).

"We gave them a choice of food and they consistently went for the bread dough," Mc Donnell said. "They really, really like it. They went bonkers for it. Bread dough outperformed everything."
 
That's some smart thinking. Bread dough is the logical extension of the beer trap in a way, what with beer being known as liquid bread.

I wonder if a sourdough culture might work as a trap - then all one would need to do is mix up a flour/water paste and let nature take its course. Perhaps a thin but gloopy consistency might work to trap the marauding molluscs.
 
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