Slug Control

Discussion in 'Gardening' started by Sutherland906, Aug 2, 2016.

  1. Sutherland906

    Sutherland906 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a 20x30ft garden and the slugs and other bugs in there need to go. I'm growing 400-1000 lb pumpkins, and I really want to save them from being devoured by the slugs. It is completely organic, so no pesticides. My flock is new, so they've been penned so far, but will be slowly let out to free range. I would love to use my girls (and guy, because he's a slug machine) to clean up the bug issue. IF I let them in, it would only be when I'm in there weeding/harvesting.. But will letting them in entice them to fly over the fence later on when they have total freedom?

    I certainly don't want my garden trashed; contents include pumpkins, cantaloupe, watermelon, cucs, carrots, sweet potatos, squash, corns, onions, beans, and will be starting broccoli & kale for fall harvest. Anything in particular they will try to go after (whether I end up letting them in or not)?
     
  2. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Chicken Obsessed

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    Anything that they don't eat/peck holes in, they will surely trample, poop on, and undermine the roots. For this reason, many of us keep our gardens off limits during the growing season, but allow access for fall clean up and spring tilling. Deer netting works very well to exclude them b/c they can't see it very well. They bounce off it a few times, run circles around the garden, bouncing off it, and finally give up to take their munching elsewhere. They aren't smart enough to "look up". Any fence that they can easily see the top of, and which will allow them to briefly land on it, they will go over.

    I use Sluggo. The only active ingredient is Iron Phosphate. Good stuff. But you need to read product label, as some of the newer formulations have an insecticide added. Do a google search for Iron Phosphate slug killer, and it should give you a list of brands. Other option is to make "slug dough" I lost the recipe, but it's: baking yeast, a bit of molasses, some corn meal, and water. Put it in a container, buried in soil to the lip. As it ferments, it will smell like a nice wine! Slugs crawl in and have a party. They have so much fun that they forget to crawl out. The only down side is that the coons come along and slurp down the bait and the slugs, making quite a mess of the affair.
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2016
  3. Sutherland906

    Sutherland906 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I planned on it for fall, but the slugs need to go now! I'll have to do some research and see if I can make a slug trap. I've heard beer can be used to lure them in, maybe it's worth a shot...
     
  4. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Chicken Obsessed

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    The yeast mixture is also effective, and much cheaper. You can put out some boards, shingles or other stuff on the ground, even more effective if you water under it. The slugs will retreat under that in the morning, and you can then scoop them up to dispose of them.
     
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  5. Sutherland906

    Sutherland906 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I like the yeast idea.... Any idea if the yeast would bother the chickens? I could feed them my daily collection, I'm sure they would love the effortless, juicy snack!
     
  6. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Chicken Obsessed

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    I don't think I'd feed it to the chickens as it would be alcohol. I'd bury them in the compost. Slugs are also deterred by copper. Some companies sell thin copper metal strips that can be applied to the edge of raised beds. The slug gets an electric shock when he touches the copper. Sounds like a fun option, but more expense than my budget or gardening style will allow.
     
  7. missflock

    missflock Just Hatched

    This might sound silly but I've read a lot about putting pennies in a garden to help with slug control. I can't tell you why, but apparently it dieters them. My mom has a massive garden in KY and there are huge slugs there. For a few years now she has been buying bowling balls from flea markets and hot gluing pennies around them... I always thought they were garden decorations til' she recently explained that putting the penny covered bowling balls in/around her garden was the only way she could keep the slugs away. I now have a couple in my organic garden and haven't had much problems at all with slugs. (My problem is moles:( )
     
  8. Sutherland906

    Sutherland906 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Upstate, NY

    I'm not sure such a miniscule amount of alcohol each snail could injest would hurt them any. It's not like each chicken would be eating a cups worthx or anything close. I'll do a bit more research to make sure. The copper is a great idea, maybe I'll try on my small raised beds. The 20x40 though is a bit much to try that with.



    I hadn't hear about pennies, but makes sense and goes with what Lazy Gardner said. Also worth a shot, I'll have to make sure to find some pre 1982 ones to have the best results. For the moles, have you thought about trying those solar powered rodent deterrents? I haven't used myself, but have considered trying.
     
  9. missflock

    missflock Just Hatched

    You are right, I forgot to mention pre 1982 pennies for the best results. I had also heard soaking them in coca-cola to clean them before hand is best, for some reason. I did this, and the pennies cleaned up very well.

    I hadn't heard of the solar powered rodent deterrents until now. I must check them out! My husband had been setting out mole traps but we had to stop that, one of the kids pulled one out and it had a mole in it and the tears went flying. We are all animal lovers so once a couple of the kids had a sit down with dad explaining how he knowingly/willingly killed an innocent mole when it was just doing what moles do... all of the traps disappeared... and the mole problem now just continues to get worse. [​IMG]

    I'm now going to order some solar powered rodent deterrents. Thanks! [​IMG]
     
  10. Sutherland906

    Sutherland906 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've seen them on ebay, and possibly at TSC. Please let me know how they work! We have woodchucks that are eyeing my garden as well, maybe it would deter them too..
     

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