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Slugs!

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Slugs!

Post  NHGardener on 6/9/2011, 8:37 pm

It did rain pretty hard today, and this evening I found 4 slugs on my plants in separate garden boxes. Is this something I should be concerned about? How do you treat for slugs?

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Re: Slugs!

Post  boffer on 6/9/2011, 9:02 pm

First off, start wearing long pants when you tend your boxes. Those slugs can hop onto your legs and slime them all up before you know what's happening.

One popular method of deterring them is to put cheap beer in dishes around your boxes. Supposedly the slugs will fall in and drown.

Another method is to sprinkle broken glass, crushed shale, or crushed egg shells around your boxes; supposedly the slugs don't like getting their bellies cut up.

There have been reports that slugs won't cross a copper barrier. However, there have been several you tube links posted on the forum showing slugs sliming copper strips and wire on their way to veggie Nirvana.

It may be too late for this year, but table top boxes don't have slug problems.


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Re: Slugs!

Post  camprn on 6/9/2011, 10:01 pm

Another method that is pretty good is lay a plank of some sort between your boxes upon the ground. In the daytime you can go out and turn the plank over and pick or scrape off the slugs hiding under there. Works for me. Also, toads eat slugs! What a Face tongue

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Re: Slugs!

Post  NHGardener on 6/9/2011, 10:24 pm

Those are great ideas (they slime your leg? or are you pulling my leg?).

I didn't know if 4 slugs made a problem, but where there's four there are probably more. Also, I wonder if they come out in the evenings only, I haven't seen them in the heat of the day. They probably like it nice and moist.

Grrr. Maybe I'll pick them off and feed them to the chickens.

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Re: Slugs!

Post  shannon1 on 6/10/2011, 1:37 am

I found snails wont cross the zelrco tape I put around the outside edge of my box to hold floating row cover. It is the spikey side, did not work for the row cover because the fluffy side would not stick to the row cover.
I nailed the other side to the box and since it would be kind of a pain to remove I just left it. Then I noticed the snails would not cross it, too uncomfortable I guess. Seems like slugs would feel the same way.

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Re: Slugs!

Post  Barkie on 6/10/2011, 4:45 am

@NHGardener wrote:Those are great ideas (they slime your leg? or are you pulling my leg?).

I didn't know if 4 slugs made a problem, but where there's four there are probably more. Also, I wonder if they come out in the evenings only, I haven't seen them in the heat of the day. They probably like it nice and moist.

Grrr. Maybe I'll pick them off and feed them to the chickens.

You are astute in reckoning that where ther are four slugs there will be more. Yes they hide during the day and don't come out if it is too dry.

Mine get active from mid Feb when it starts to warm up a bit so I put down bait which pulls them to a place I can find them rather than go round looking for them. On a damp night I go out with a flashlight (hee hee) and collect them up from around the bait. Bait is a small saucer of damp cat food biscuits, catmeat or damp bran.

I also use slug pubs, a small container sunk into the ground with just an inch above the ground quarter filled with cheap beer, yeasty fermenting sugar and water also does the trick. Not lager blonde light beer. Slugs here rarely fall in and some are big and athletic enough to climb out but the pubs attract them to where you can find them around midnight.

The plank is a good method for daytime hunting and you may also find ground beetles which eat them.

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Re: Slugs!

Post  NHGardener on 6/10/2011, 7:14 am

Is Budweiser considered cheap beer? I have some of that hanging around. rofl

Would dog food work like cat biscuits? I have some Kibbles & Bits here too.

I looked at 6:45 this morning with all the dew and I didn't see any slugs, but sunlight was out, they may have gone to bed.

Guess I should go to google and study this more. I guess it's a pretty common problem then. I didn't know if slugs were a problem or not. I guess they eat leaves. I knew when I saw them crawling on the leaves it probably wasn't a good thing.

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Re: Slugs!

Post  Barkie on 6/10/2011, 12:41 pm

@shannon1 wrote:I found snails wont cross the zelrco tape I put around the outside edge of my box to hold floating row cover. It is the spikey side, did not work for the row cover because the fluffy side would not stick to the row cover.
I nailed the other side to the box and since it would be kind of a pain to remove I just left it. Then I noticed the snails would not cross it, too uncomfortable I guess. Seems like slugs would feel the same way.

Sounds promising! I'm always one for experiments to see what works best for me. It might make me lazy about collecting them up before they start breeding?

Also came across the idea of fixing half round gutter pipe to a raised bed so that it is like this ( and spraying the outer concave face with cooking oil. It is claimed that slimy feet can't get past it because they just slide back down.

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Re: Slugs!

Post  Furbalsmom on 6/10/2011, 12:45 pm

Guess I should go to google and study this more. I guess it's a pretty common problem then. I didn't know if slugs were a problem or not. I guess they eat leaves. I knew when I saw them crawling on the leaves it probably wasn't a good thing.

Slugs are evil. They slime and can completely de-leaf a plant in no time at all. I had some that destroyed not only veggies, but ate the marigolds too.

There is an organic product called Sluggo (not Sluggo Plus) that can be sprinkled around the outside of the SFG bed.

We used Bud last year, placed in shallow tubs like 16 oz sour cream comes in, and the slugs crept into the tubs and drowned. We cut one inch holes around the top, under the rim, buried the container up to the holes, then filled up to the holes with beer. You do need to empty the beer and slugs out everyday. Don't let those nasty things sit around in the containers. Yukk! Any other inexpensive beer seems to works too. We did not use light beer. I don't know if that makes a difference or not.

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Re: Slugs!

Post  NHGardener on 6/10/2011, 12:53 pm

Furbalsmom - Great tip, thanks. I have the plastic containers, I have the beer, now I'm wondering how many I should place for 5 boxes - maybe one container for every 2 boxes?

Do you have any tips for aphids?

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Re: Slugs!

Post  Barkie on 6/10/2011, 1:04 pm

@NHGardener wrote:Is Budweiser considered cheap beer? I have some of that hanging around.

Would dog food work like cat biscuits? I have some Kibbles & Bits here too.

I looked at 6:45 this morning with all the dew and I didn't see any slugs, but sunlight was out, they may have gone to bed.

Guess I should go to google and study this more. I guess it's a pretty common problem then. I didn't know if slugs were a problem or not. I guess they eat leaves. I knew when I saw them crawling on the leaves it probably wasn't a good thing.

Don't know about Budweiser and wouldn't like to comment

Yes, they are like an ill-mannered man or a panda "eats shoots and leaves". Laughing
The cheapest dried dog or cat biscuit you can find should do it. I found the two cats couldn't get near their plate for slugs one day, with my two dogs though food was never in a bowl more than about 6 seconds. Whichever bait you try you have to be out hunting the slimers while it is dark and damp. It is a case of finding what works best for you without spending big bucks. Good hunting!

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Re: Slugs!

Post  NHGardener on 6/10/2011, 1:13 pm

Ah. It just occurred to me that I'm going to try the beer. Because the dog food might attract raccoons, and they might trample my fragile fencing.

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Re: Slugs!

Post  Furbalsmom on 6/10/2011, 2:50 pm

NHGardener

If you have aphid predators, that would help. Lady Beetles, Lacewings or Praying Mantis all love aphids. The problem is if you buy these predators, they may eat your aphids, then move away to someone else's garden.

What I have tried in the past is using a forceful jet or spray of water to wash the aphids off the plant, then prepare a spray to kill those still on the plant. Be sure to shake the spray bottle well before squirting on the plants. You want to spray both the tops and bottoms of the leaves as very often the aphids will hide under the leaves. The spray has to be repeated for future aphids.

Plant spray

1 tblsp soap, such as Castile or liquid Ivory dish soap.
1 Gallon of water

another spray
1 tsp soap, such as Castile or liquid Ivory dish soap
1 tsp white oil, like vegetable or mineral oil
1 Qt water

I would not use over 1 tsp of oil to a qt of water, because the oil will linger on the plant and too much oil will intensify the sun on the plants and could damage the leaves.

There are other variations of these sprays, but this is what I used last year.

I have never used DE, and I know there are concerns on how you use it because it is dangerous to bees.


Last edited by Furbalsmom on 6/10/2011, 2:55 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : comment on DE)

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Re: Slugs!

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