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Lindsaylew82
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I got a bad case of slugs.

I've never had them before. A few here or there, but nothing like this! So many!!! So small! Tonight I came in with a plastic solo cup half way to the top of my suds with slugs. 10-12 per marigold. Not really on anything else, a few on basils, but there sure were a lot on my marigolds. I'm not really sure how DE could work with my mulch. Pine straw doesn't really hold much on the surface. They think my grass clippings are the best hangouts ever!

This is the first time I've ever used pine straw, and I'm wondering if I may have imported them. We also had a terrible garden season last year. LOOOOOOOTS of rain and much spoilage. Lots of rotten soggy earth. Just wondering how everyone else's slug issues are going.

What are you using for control?I'm hand picking. Over an hour of hand picking... So many...
Are there birds that really like them? I noticed several bluebirds and Robbins picking around after our storm this afternoon and splashing around in my water collection between rows. I'll gladly add some bird baths to my garden.

I also noticed that where my Mexican tarragon is flanking marigolds, there were very few slugs on one and NONE on the other. Coincidence? Maybe I should experiment with a tarragon smoothie spray!!! :()
Lindsay
Upstate, SC
USDA Zone 7b/ Sunset Zone 31

imafan26
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

I have thousands of slugs and snails. It is a constant battle. After the rain the other day. I got 47 snails and 4 slugs and two more snails as I was going out the door. The next day I caught 23 snails and 0 slugs. Yesterday I only caught 4.
I hardly use other chemicals on my garden but I put out a lot of slug bait, and the snails are still winning.

PS they like to hide in mulch.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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RogueRose
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

I heard you take egg shells and crush them (but not into a powder) and put them around whatever they're eating. The sharp edges of the shells aren't comfy for the slugs and snails to walk on. Also you can "bait" them by putting down halves of I think oranges...or it might be something else upside down and they go into that and then you can throw it out.

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Lindsaylew82
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

I've been reading some of the other posts on the forum, and they're hilarious. I don't feel so bad. My neighbor came over to see why I was making so many whiney noises. He saw me grimacing and picking off slugs with my trusty long surgical hemostats. He looked at me like I was crazy and then asked me why I didn't just put seven's on it... I just fake laughed like the proper southern girl I am, blessed his heart under my breath, and continued on with my hemostat.

I might be able to save up enough eggshells in a year to cover my garden.

I may beer bait them... But not with my good beer. I'll have to go to the gas station for a couple 40's of cheap malt. ;P
Lindsay
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

Epsom salts will kill all the slugs fast. Sprinkle them in the garden or even put some in a sprinkling can and the salty water will kill them and hurt very few other things! Salt dissolves the slugs! Epsom salts are good for crops and makes the leaves brighter. I put them in the garden about once a month. Those little snails will eat holes in the lettuce. A little lyme will also help!
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imafan26
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

Slugs are attracted to the yeast in the beer. It is cheaper to buy cake activated yeast mix it in some lukewarm water and a spoonful of sugar and once it is proofed set it out.

I do use eggshells and it does help a little bit. So does cut hair. Copper works as a barrier, but only to keep them out.

I do have a few cannibal snails and they are getting some of them.

I find them under pots, in my pots eating the roots. They climb up trees and fences to get my orchids, and I grow lettuce in trays on my nursery bench since it is the only place where I can have any hope of controlling them. Even then, the snails went up the Meyer lemon and used the branch to get on top of the nursery bench. They are sneaky.
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Lindsaylew82
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

:hehe: :hehe: That seems like an AWEFUL lot of work for a bit of lettuce...for the slug.
I have to be reasonable in my treatment. My plot is 40'x60' so copper and eggshells are a little unreasonable (for me anyway). Hand picking was VERY effective, but I'm sure I drowned over 250 slugs.
Neem is the only product I've ever used, for anything, aside from spinosad on my grass for fire ants, and it was sort of a "so help me, if me or my child get attacked one more time" moment.
Lindsay
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applestar
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

Lindsaylew82 wrote:I've been reading some of the other posts on the forum, and they're hilarious. I don't feel so bad. My neighbor came over to see why I was making so many whiney noises. He saw me grimacing and picking off slugs with my trusty long surgical hemostats. He looked at me like I was crazy and then asked me why I didn't just put seven's on it... I just fake laughed like the proper southern girl I am, blessed his heart under my breath, and continued on with my hemostat.

I might be able to save up enough eggshells in a year to cover my garden.

I may beer bait them... But not with my good beer. I'll have to go to the gas station for a couple 40's of cheap malt. ;P
:lol: You HAVE been reading the other threads on the forum! :lol:

I have been told that the beer (and probably yeast) traps will ATTRACT slugs from good distance away -- better to get the neighbors to set out traps :P so keep that in mind if you decide to use them and set them up AWAY from your garden. I haven't been successful using them -- that's why I asked about brand of beers before -- maybe I have teetotaller slugs or something....:?

Thankfully you didn't take your neighbor at his word. Definitely no to Sevin. Also salt is salt, I feel. They can get concentrated if you put down too much and then they won't be beneficial any more. I don't know the threshold, but keep in mind you only need a tablespoon per two gallons of water for the Epsom salt to be effective treatment for the plants.

I have been finding tiny baby slugs under objects left on the ground overnight. Yesterday was a 10" diameter plastic bucket lid. Last night some tub lids and the compost bin lid I left leaning on the fence blew over in the gusty rainstorm, so it will be interesting to see if I have more slugs to pick off. (Hemostat sounds like it would be less tiring on a long drawn out slug hunt than chopsticks :wink:)
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rainbowgardener
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

The Sevin suggestion was just stupid. Not only is it really bad stuff ( https://www.helpfulgardener.com/forum/vi ... in#p329510 ) toxic to honeybees and other beneficial insects you want in your garden, it is insecticide. Slugs are not insects and would not be harmed by it.

diatomaceous earth, egg shells, hand picking, traps. Just laying a board down flat on the soil often works as a trap. Pick it up in the daytime and you will usually find a bunch of them hiding on it.
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Lindsaylew82
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

I have raised rows, which also help. I picked for over an hour, and even with long tools and raised earth, I had a backache. Plus, it was so muggy that my glasses were fogging and pretty much useless, so I had to lean in reeeeeeeal close.

I would love to let my neighbor in on his idiocy, but I fear what he would do to my garden out of vengeance. Besides, he and the guy in the other side of his duplex do their fair share of slug attracting with all the empty keystone cans they leave out every night... Score, I guess. :roll:
I'd never put anything like sevens in my garden.
Lindsay
Upstate, SC
USDA Zone 7b/ Sunset Zone 31

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Lindsaylew82
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

I wonder if they are repelled by their own dead? I haven't tossed my cup of soapy slime balls yet. Hmmmmmm.... Tarragon slug smoothie...
Lindsay
Upstate, SC
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imafan26
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

I know they don't like Thai basil. They would eat sweet basil, but not a slug or snail even gets close to Thai basil.

I use sluggo in the garden, it is iron phosphate so much less toxic than methaldehyde. I try to put the bait in pots turned on its side rather than on the ground.

Hand picking and baiting the perimeter helps. Hand picking every day in the early morning and evening at least makes me feel like I am doing something.

I wouldn't have to do this if I had a toad. However, I don't like toads either.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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ElizabethB
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

Lindsay - slugs and snails were eating my basil and gerbera daisies. I put out shallow pans of beer and crushed egg shells around the individual plants. The slugs are attracted to the yeast in the beer. They fall in and die happy. You can use cake yeast in water. If you don't use eggs check with your neighbors or any local restaurant that serves eggs.

Sounds crazy but after 3 or 4 days of beer and egg shells I have not had any slugs or snails attacking my plants. We have been having a horrendous amount of rain since yesterday. Once the rain stops I will keep an eye out for a fresh invasion.

The slugs hide under mulch, under pots, under decks of pavers - any place cool and damp. My parents built our family home in the early 1950's. It was built on piers and then bricked to the ground with access openings and weep holes in the brick. At night the slugs would come out from under the house and attack Mom's patio plants and leave slime trails all over the patio. Dad would go out at night with salt and a big knife. He would put salt on the slugs then hack them. To help out I put out pans of beer one evening. The next day they were full of slugs. I dropped in 2 nights later and Dad was back on the patio with his salt and big knife.

The beer or yeast water with egg shells really works and is a much better alternative to baits.

Hand picking is not only gross but an exercise in futility.

Good luck
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

When I've had the nasty things sliming around, Have used sluggo (or other brand that is iron), pull away and don't mulch plants most affected, and salt. The salt is for going out after dark, spotting one, and sprinkle a few grains of salt on it. Ick factor x ten. This isn't enough salt to mess with the dirt and plants.
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Lindsaylew82
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

When I started out, I was armed with cynthia_h's tales of glory and pumped to do them maximum damage. I squished the little ones between my fingers without a qualm. Did you know they manage to slime away if you don't apply the correct amount of pressure? Squeeeeze... pop!
Audibly gagged! Y'all are way more gutsy than me!!!! :shock: Ain't no WAY!
Lindsay
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

When you use something that is a benefit to the plants and also gets rid of slugs its a winner. Besides Epson salts are very cheap at wal mart and is actually a good fertilizer. Epson salts are nice to add to your bath water also! Salt dissolves snails and deters them from coming back since they are turned into a liquid!
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Lindsaylew82
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

Found some interesting info while doing a search for myself! Mostly reiteration from these fine tips! Something different though, is the use of coffee! Foliar sprays of coffee is said to be toxic to them when they eat the sprayed foliage! Whatch'all think about that?

Also, a toad crawled over my flip flopped foot tonight and I very nearly died scrambling away. Kidding...but seriously, I'm a long distance runner, and my heart hasn't seen that rate in years. :oops:

Sorry forgot the link:
https://www.slugfence.com/slug_info/body ... ml#enemies
Lindsay
Upstate, SC
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14AudreyGardener14
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

I've heard a lot about that but I just put a ring of salt around my plant. I haven't seen any bad results. It wasn't harmful to the plants either. Would continuing to do so help or would your method help better?

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Lindsaylew82
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

I would not put salt in my garden. Ever. I'm just not willing to risk losing my plants. And I don't know how you'd fix it if you used to much. Also I'm sure there is a cumulative effect with repeated use.
I had a HUGE reduction within a week. Just from hand picking. I am planning to try the coffee. I use coffee grounds all over my garden anyway.
Lindsay
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USDA Zone 7b/ Sunset Zone 31

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Lindsaylew82
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

66 more slugs this morning. :evil:

My initial fear of touching them is has been replaced with rage because they just. keep. showing up! It has driven me to be a bit more aggressive when picking them... :twisted:
I still can't stomach "popping" them. :>
By salt, I mean Table salt.
Lindsay
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

Lindsaylew82 wrote:
When I started out, I was armed with cynthia_h's tales of glory and pumped to do them maximum damage. I squished the little ones between my fingers without a qualm. Did you know they manage to slime away if you don't apply the correct amount of pressure? Squeeeeze... pop!
Audibly gagged! Y'all are way more gutsy than me!!!! :shock: Ain't no WAY!
:twisted: ...I think you are getting there... :twisted:
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Lindsaylew82
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

Haha! I'm trying! ;) I can't bare hand slugs though. They are really starting to get to me! Not nearly as bad as squash bugs will by the end of the season.

One lonely slug last night. And just a baby! He got the suds. :twisted: :twisted: :twisted:
Lindsay
Upstate, SC
USDA Zone 7b/ Sunset Zone 31

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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

Things that have worked for me:

1) the beer thing worked, but it was minimal. Maybe 10 snugs died a slow drunken death

2) hand picking worked. And then we would usually get a freeze, or a couple 100 degree days (in Texas those could be only a few days apart it seems!) and would dramatically help reduce the problem. And don't want to do it yourself? Hire a neighbors little kid do earn 5 cents for each snail collected! I did that and she came and redeemed her $2.25, and it was the best $2.25 I ever spent!
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Lindsaylew82
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

That is a GLORIOUS idea!!!
Lindsay
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Re: I got a bad case of slugs.

Remember if you are using a yeast trap, you need to add a little sugar to very warm water (110 degrees) along with the activated yeast to get it to bloom before you set out the trap.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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