How to get rid of Slugs and Snails

How to get rid of Slugs and Snails - Garden Pest Tip

By Ronnie Dauber, Garden Guides Contributor

About Snails and Slugs

Slugs and snails are not insects but are mollusks born early in the spring They are similar in nature, only the snail has a shell. They hide in damp, cool places on the underside of leaves or in the cool soil nearby during the day to avoid the heat and come out at night to feed.

Prevention and Control

Sow the plants in the garden with ample circulation room so they are exposed to fresh air and heat. This avoids the cool, damp areas for the pests to hide in. Stake or cage the plants so they are off the ground. Use cedar chips and pine needles as mulch, as they repel these pests.

Affected Plants

Plants that are close together, low to the ground and without good circulation create the breeding grounds for these pests and are in jeopardy of becoming their harvest.


Slugs and snails thrive on leaves, fruit and crowns of plants and consume several times their body weight each night, destroying a crop in days.

Predator Insects

Birds are known to eat these pests, but since they are sleeping while the pests are active, they are not a threat to their existence.

Natural Insecticides

Household ammonia, diluted with water and sprayed directly onto the pests will destroy them immediately.

Other Methods of Control

The metal copper causes a negative reaction in the chemistry of these pests, so by placing a strip of copper flashing around each plant, these pests will stay away from that spot. Also, an empty pot placed upside down by the plants at night will become the hideout for the pests as the day heat sets in, making it an easy way to catch and destroy them.

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