I made a quick visit to the plot today to dig up some potatoes and pick some calabrese. The slugs have been busy sliming over and eating the calabrese heads, so I decided to pick them all in the hope that I can better protect the next regrowth. I also lifted some young beetroots and discovered that these too had been burrowed into by the slugs. Finally, I picked a head of savoy cabbage which, yes you guessed it, was home to a family of slugs.
Not surprisingly my mind was filled with thoughts of slug destruction and earlier this evening I googled for solutions. One thing I learned is that beetroot does well near the sea and is not adverse to a bit of salt. If you pour salt on a slug it shrivels up and dies… GUARANTEED!
I will be sprinkling salt around my beetroot tomorrow!
Another thing I learned is that slugs don’t like vaseline or other greasy substances. One tip I read was to smear a continuous barrier of vaseline (or other greasy substance) around the rim of a plant pot, over which slugs will not pass. Before long I had an epiphany… what if I mixed salt with vaseline… a double whammy of slug barrier and slug death! I proceeded to google it and in the top five results was..
‘I covered myself in vaseline and pretended to be a slug.’
I couldn’t resist clicking but sadly this turned out to be a very short youtube clip of a video game. When it ended, the usual ‘recommended’ window of clips came up on the screen and one of them was…
Talk about going off on a tangent! I laughed myself silly, especially at some of the comments. Slugs forgotten momentarily!
Slugs were scarce earlier in the year but they have invaded our garden and our lottie in the last few weeks. Darn slimey critters.
They have the upper hand at my plot! Salt and vaseline experiments will be starting soon!
I would go for the Vaseline, without salt, salt is just cruel, because it doesn’t kill them immediately .
other animal friendly tricks, spray your leaves with cold coffee, they will not touch them any more. Or put shallow containers with beer around your lot…. they will be attracted to them and drown in them (having the happiest moment of their life :D). Citric acid also works, it kills them directly on contact…
To be honest I’m hoping they will avoid the salt and just go somewhere else! I have drowned hundreds in beer traps and it’s disgusting, yet they just keep coming!
I’ve heard they dislike garlic! Garlic can be grown alongside the veg as a repellant or at night spray water that has been boiled with garlic. I haven’t tried it myself but it might be worth checking out. I don’t think it affects the taste of the veg!!
Thanks for the tip Lisa. I think next year I will grow more plants and herbs that they don’t like!
Slugs have had the upper hand for most of us this year… I still find the “slug planks” work well… It’s quite time-consuming harvesting them, but worth it for the joy of murdering them. This is a joy I only discovered this year!
It’s hard to prove but I think I had some success with the vaseline and salt combo. However, it is way too messy and not a plot-wide solution. I have been using the ‘planks’ now for a few weeks and it’s very rewarding. I have noticed an increase in the beetle population who I presume feed on the murdered slugs. I have also cleaned up the plot which has removed a lot of the slugs’ hiding places. It’s planks from here on in!
Excellent! and i’ll try the vaseline trick next year…
Useful tips. I’ve been working on a post about allotment remedies. Have you tried coffee grounds against slugs?
Hi, that was a really bad year for slugs, and yes I tried everything, including coffee grounds. Trouble was it rained so much that nothing was effective against them except for the ‘slug plank’ method mentioned above by Diggitydigg. That method is to lay wooden planks in between the beds. When the slugs finish feeding for the night, they take refuge under the wood. Then, in the morning you can discard/kill any slugs you find. Also I suggest you clear your plot of as many slug hiding places as possible (except for the planks). You could also put slices of raw potato under the planks to attract the slugs.
I won’t do the vaseline trick again, two years later I’m still slipping on the stuff!
Our soil is so sandy we don’t have many slugs. It’s marvellous!
Lucky you. I’m hoping for a dryish summer, that will keep them at bay. Oh and another tip… don’t water in the evening, they love that!