Start a new thread

1 to 20 of 26 replies

I too heard of these marvellous copper rings. But still these snails cannot be beaten, what about salt on the pot soil, would that work?
I think this year must be 'the year of the snail'. Every morning I go out and collect between 5 and 18 of the beastly things. Just when I think I am getting somewhere near seeing the back of them and only picking up 3 or 4, the next morning I find 10 or more. What is the answer? They have eaten my courgette and Market More cucumber, climbed the bean poles and eaten the leaves 3ft up. If I was French I would be rubbing my hands in glee and saving pounds on meat bills instead I am spending a fortune on pellets!
My girlfriend and I have been growing our own vegetables for the first time this year. We were so upset to go out one morning and find half of our budding crop eaten away by snails. We bought some pellets (pet friendly for our black cat) from the garden centre and sprinkled liberally, and that seems to have pretty much cured the problem. There are still plenty of snails we find lurking in the garden though, which I have now taken to moving to the other side of the road in the front.
What about the birds that were supposed to eat slugs? There was a big fat juicy slug on top of the compost bin, exposed to the elements and not a single slug-eating bird to be seen.
It does appear to be the year of the slimy mollusc, since June 13 my wife (head slug hunter) has collected over 1350 slugs and snails. I do not think moving them helps as they seem to know where the best food can be found. The birds that eat them like thrushes are not around these days so the only way to protect your crops is to collect and dispatch them.


This year I have lost all my runner beans, sunflowers and sweetcorn to slugs and snails. They have even had the leaf tops off radishes! Surprisingly, strawberries have survived and been abundant. It has been so wet here in Wilts that I have found slugs chomping away at midday.
Last year I used nematodes against slugs and snails but because of weather didn't get round to getting any this year. The amount of damage the slugs have done I will be using them again next year.
This year I have been resorting to collecting the critters in the act of eating my plants by torchlight as all my usual deterrents are not working - cut off plastic bottles encircling new plants and scattering of ash and grit around. I have help from numerous frogs and toads. I though at first it was just snails until I started this nightly ritual and was amazed by the size of some of the slugs. I think the frogs turn and run!
I'm afraid I have no sympathy for snails and slugs. After over 30 years growing from seeds and cuttings, watching them grow, planting them out, only to find them dead and leafless in one night, I now go out late at night armed with a torch and a packet of salt. Probably very cruel, a nasty way to kill them, and I'll never go to Heaven, I suppose, but it's them or my plants and my plants will win every time. Strange though, no matter how many I kill in one night, there are still many more in the garden the next night!
We had several of our plants destroyed two years ago by slugs and snails. So last year I put several plastic cups half filled with either left over or cheap beer and caught quite a few of them. Much safer for birds and cats the most it will do is make them a bit wobbly on their legs??? We also feed the birds with milk thistle seeds and various fat soaked balls and seeds, therefore attracting several different species of birds into the garden. The result is that this year I have an excellent display from a plant I do not know the name of, but was eaten to shreds by slugs previously! And so far no problem with slugs or snails.
I think snails have more intelligence than people give them credit for. I heard that snails have a 'homing' instinct, so even if you put them across the road they still come back to your garden. Does anyone know if this is true, or is it just the ramblings of a frustrated garden lover?
I too have been told slugs have a homing instinct, but at least I feel better when I find some and toss them over the wall onto the road. They have to run the gauntlet of the trafic before they get a meal on the back of my work.
Slugs & snails do have very strong homing instincts & were in fact used by the French military, following WW1, to carry messages, in the same way that other armies used carrier pigeons. The pigeons were prone to being eaten by birds of prey & the use of slugs & snails clearly removed this hazard & in the context of WW1 battles, where the front line didn't move for a number of years, they were clearly well suited. However French military planners had not reckoned with the Wehrmacht's blitzkrieg advance, which not only outstripped the slugs & snails carrying warning messages, but also squashed a good many. In short, slugs & snails are responsible for World War Two.
My daughter and I have often wondered why slugs so gallantly cross the road only to meet with a swift demise when the inevitable car squashes them. We now think that these slugs are actually outcasts, sent into exile "across the concrete" after committing some heinous crime against Slugdom itself. Any takers for this theory??
Maybe the following quote from Withnail & I provides the true reason: "These aren't accidents, they're throwing themselves into the road! Gladly! Throwing themselves into the road to escape all this hideousness"


I think we have all had our gardens desimmated by the 'slime balls' this year, I have tried everything to no avail - I now collect the critters and put them in the council recyling compost bin in the hope that they won't find there way back!
I put the slugs in the council recycling bin and the little critters found their way out - under the backdoor and into the cat food bowl. I came down one evening to find a least ten in the cat bowl! Not satisfied with eating my lettuce, beans and cauliflowers. They have taken to eating cat food. What is going on!
It seems I am not alone fighting the snail invasion. My neighbour puts those she finds ina screw top jar and into the refuse sack because she found that when she put them straight into a plastic bag the eat their way out! Gardeners World showed them using coffee grounds, so anyone with a coffee addiction or large family might have the answer, bran is another which I must try when I remember to buy some! I will pay us all to give close attention to empty pots and under seed trays this autumn, they sealed themselves into some pipes which I found earlier in the year, they were jam-packed, so they went to the refuse centre - pipes and all!!!
I'm afraid that there is only one solution to snails. It may not appeal to the sensitive but more humanitarian methods are bound to fail. Even exiling the snails will only result in their tormenting somebody else. I'm afraid that you have to tread on them (ensure that you are wearing suitable footwear - spike heels may be effective but your aim needs to be perfectly accurate). In compensation snails do make a very satisfying crunch.
Throwing them into next doors!! Killing them with cruel!! I'm with you James....the power of a size 9 boot!! If the slugs and snails are collected up and taken to a killing zone, the resulting "mess" can then be scraped up and put onto the compost heap. A very satisfying form of recycling. No! I am not taking on all the neighbours' slugs and snails, there's plenty here to keep crunching.