Below content contains scenes of graphic violence and gore. Reader discretion is advised🙂
Due to the unique position of my garden, it does not get sun for 6 months in a year. The garden is open to the sky; but in between 2 apartments buildings. So for half the year, due to reasons I cannot explain (since I have no idea), the sun tilts in such a way that my garden is in forlorn, dreary shade. I know what is to be done during this time. Get more leafy plants and forget about the flowering plants. Unfortunately, I love flowering plants and cannot let go of them. For 6 months, these flowering plants hibernate, some stay completely still without growing, some wither, some die, very few thrive.
This time also coincides with the rainy season, resulting in a lot of slugs in my garden. I knew they were around. Whenever I dug the soil to plant something, I would see many of them. Then I started seeing extra-large slugs curled around strings of pearly white eggs. And whatever seed I planted was not sprouting.
So I researched in Google for ways to get rid of slugs. Beer trap was the most common solution. Pretty simple. Pour some beer into a glass, bury the glass 3/4th in the soil and wait for slugs to come to drink beer and drown in the glass. There was one problem. Beer is expensive, and I didn’t think the slugs were worth the money or the effort involved in sourcing beer.
Next solution was easier, dissolve some yeast in warm water, pour it into a glass and bury the glass 3/4th in the soil with about half inch of the glass sticking out. I got into action.
The day I buried them in water, I went out at night with a torch to see if it was working. I saw 3-4 slugs in the process of reaching the yeast solution. But the most interesting thing was the number of slugs that were seen around in the garden at that time of the night. There was hundreds… no thousands of them in plain sight. 2 glasses of yeast solution was not going to suffice. I started taking them with my trowel and cutting them into two. It’s a very gory job and not for the faint-hearted. Slugs are full of green goo, which oozes out when you cut them.
Cut slugs don’t regenerate like earthworms. So this is an effective method, though not a clean method. I realized that chopping up close to a thousand slugs was not going to work. I would be having slug nightmares for months to come.
So I searched for more solutions. By the way, the slugs in my garden are plain ugly. No houses on their back, no pretty markings, nothing!
If you think that looks ugly, you might want to see close up pictures.
Now that you’ve been properly introduced to my slugs, let me proceed. The next idea I had was to put some salt on them. For those ignorant of this process, salt kills slugs almost immediately through osmosis, drawing out water from their bodies and dehydrating them.
I started going out with a packet of salt and a torch, and marinating slugs. They die almost immediately and without the afore mentioned gore.
Too much salt is not good for the soil, I know. But too many slugs are also not good. They came down from thousands to hundreds to a mere handful each day. I’ve been doing this for a week and my garden is reasonably slug-free.
After using the salt method for some time, I started worrying about the soil in my garden. So now, I have switched to picking the slugs with a tweezer and drowning them in soap water. I know that this will only work for small gardens where you can pick them up individually.
For large gardens, there are other methods like sprinkling ash in the soil, or using diatomaceous earth.
So here are the list of things you can do to get rid of slugs:
- Give them beer, and a joyful death. Add some beer to a glass, bury it in soil with an inch of the glass sticking out.
- Yeast solution also works the same way.
- Go out with a torch at night. Pick them up and kill them brutally. The joy you get out of it depends on how mad you are with them.
- Go out with a torch at night. Marinate them with salt. Don’t do this for too long as it might spoil your soil.
- Go out with a torch at night. Pick up the slugs and put them into a soap and water solution to drown them.
- For large gardens use ash or diatomaceous earth.
- Make sure you water the plants in the morning, giving the soil enough time to dry out before night.
There you go. 5 effective ways to deal with a slug infestation.