How to Stop Slugs from Damaging Your Garden

Slugs are a common garden pest that can prove to be a major risk to young plants. This article aims to help you reduce the number of slugs in your garden.

Slugs are one of the biggest threats to your garden when you have young plants. Usually slugs like to eat dead vegetation but they’re more than happy to attack saplings. They need to keep themselves moist to survive, making them nocturnal, and lay their eggs in soft soil. They tend to be more active in spring and autumn. If you want to protect any of your vulnerable plants and flowers or just don’t like these slimy pests, here are a few things you can do to get rid of them.

Building Traps

One of the easiest methods of getting rid of slugs is to lay out a couple of traps to catch or kill them.

 

  1. One simple trap you can build is a jam jar with a small amount of beer in the bottom. Slugs love beer so leave the jar out over night and several will have climbed in and drowned by the morning.
  2. If they seem to be infesting one area of your garden a bin bag trap could help you get rid of a lot of them in one fell swoop. Put a couple of out-of-date lettuce in a bin bag and pour a cup of beer over them with a handful of bran flakes. Leave the bag in the problem spot over night and the slugs will have climbed in meaning you can just pick up the bag and throw them away.

Encouraging Predators

A lot of other insects and birds will be more than happy to get rid of slugs for you. Getting creatures to take up residence in your garden will significantly reduce the number of slugs.

  1. Have a bird table and/or a bird bath. Birds will soon get the idea that your garden is a good place to grab a bite to eat and catch some slugs in the process.
  2. Have a pond. A pond without goldfish is a good way of encouraging frogs and toads to stay in your garden. They’ll be more than happy to kill some slugs for you.
  3. Having long grass is a good way of encouraging slow-worms to stay in your garden. Again, these worms are a natural predator of slugs.

General Maintenance

Here are a few things you might want to do now and again to help lower the number of slugs in your garden.

  1. Picking up dead leaves regularly will discourage slugs from invading your garden. Taking away their major food source will reduce their numbers.
  2. Raking soil in winter will expose slug eggs which will freeze in the cold weather.
  3. A more straight forward method is to simply hunt for them. After dark, walk around your garden at night and remove any slugs you find using plastic gloves or plastic bags.

By following the advice outlined in this article you’ll greatly increase the chances of your saplings flourishing and be rid of one of the most irritating garden pests.

Happy gardening.