How to Get Rid of Snails and Slugs - Knowledgebase Question

West Seneca, NY
Question by sbray5
May 19, 1999
How to get rid of snails and slugs out of your gardens without hurting the plant and vegetables?


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Answer from NGA
May 19, 1999

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There are a number of methods for dealing with snails and slugs. One is handpicking them at night, but this is time consuming if nothing else. The chemical metaldehyde will kill slugs. It's found in various slug baits which should be used according to the label instructions. Keep in mind however that metaldehyde is toxic to birds and animals that might frequent the area. Some gardeners report success using copper slug barrier tape, beer traps (slug saloons) and also applying scratchy barriers on the soil that slugs won't crawl over such as ashes, crushed egg shells or garden grade diatomaceous earth. You can also remove or routinely disturb leaf litter or mulch material from the soil (they like to hide in plant debris) and certainly do a good fall and early spring clean up, raking the area to disturb any overwintering eggs.

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