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Video: Effective Methods Of Dealing With Slugs. Photo
A slug is an outwardly rather cute gastropod, slowly moving mollusk, which evolution has deprived of a protective shell, that is, even a tiny shell, has not endowed with poison in the body, but has endowed with extraordinary gluttony and secrecy. And this gluttony brings us, gardeners and gardeners, a lot of trouble. After all, it seems that a slug can devour all living things in the garden! How to moderate his appetites? We will tell you about effective methods of dealing with slugs in this publication.
- Slug biology
- Breeding slugs
- Slug harm
- Slug control measures
Biologically, the body of a slug itself has a head and torso, which has a mantle and a so-called leg. There are two pairs of tentacles on the head, one pair is shorter and directed downward, the other is longer and directed upward. On the long tentacles are the eyes and receptors responsible for smelling, and on the lower ones - receptors that allow you to determine the taste of food.
There is a mouth opening in the center of the head. The mantle is located directly behind the head, on the back of the mollusk, in the mantle there is a light, slightly on the right side, a hole for breathing, and an anus is located not far away. The leg, in fact, is the lowermost part of the slug's body, with the help of it he moves.
The skin of the slug is very thin, always covered with mucus, if the mucus dries up for some reason, then the slug itself dies. The color may vary slightly, for example, be sandy, gray, etc.
An interesting fact is that each individual slug is hermaphrodite, that is, it has both male and female genitals, but in order to lay eggs from which full-fledged slugs will hatch, they still need mating. This process is sometimes funny, slugs in the process of mating seem to dance, wriggling around each other, finding a partner by a special smell, which, according to scientists, is unique for each individual, like fingerprints for you and me.
After mating (attention!), Each of the individuals participating in the process lays a couple of dozen eggs, using areas with highly moistened soil for the ovipositor, and after a month or less, small slugs emerge from the eggs, first feeding on the remains of organic matter in the soil. After a month and a half, each of the hatched slug larvae is capable of reproduction and laying eggs.
By the way, after the first clutch, slugs do not need to mate again, the resulting "charge" is enough for a clutch of several hundred eggs. Just imagine how fast they can reproduce!
Slugs inflict special damage in the form of the often completely destroyed aboveground part of various cultures in the southern regions, and in the center and north, where reproduction stops with the onset of the first frost and the laid eggs rarely survive the winter, like the individuals themselves, which sharply limits their number, by for this reason, the damage from slugs is not so great.
In order for the slugs to eat and digest all the plants in your garden, it is necessary that you do not show up there during the entire warm season, which should differ in early and warm spring, cool and rainy summer, and there were no significantly critical frosts in autumn and winter.
Slug control measures
There are a huge number of measures to combat slugs: from the sole of the shoe to chemicals, but it is better to start with prevention. Perhaps, given certain subtleties and knowing the biology of the pest, you will reach a situation where no more than a couple of slugs will miraculously appear on your site, which will not cause any serious damage.
Preventive control measures
The most important thing here is to follow the planting scheme, not to thicken the plants, to deal with weeds, to maintain cleanliness and order on the site and not to be zealous with watering. Especially uncontrolled irrigation by sprinkling, when sprinklers are placed and water flies in all directions, generously wetting both what is needed and what is not at all necessary.
Do not overgrow the beds with weeds, including the aisles, this is more than a convenient place for both slug dislocation and breeding.
Around November, just before the frosts, dig up the soil with a full bayonet of a shovel, and leave it until spring. Slugs physically cannot hide deeply, they will die in the first winter, along with the eggs laid, so in the spring you will have a minimum of problems with eliminating this pest.
In the spring, the site can be re-dug up and also leave the clods unbroken for at least a couple of days, this is necessary in order to finish off that ovipositor that overwintered - now it will simply dry out under the hot spring rays of the sun.
If you have the opportunity, then all the aisles and garden paths, which are constant on the site from year to year, can be covered with needles or small stones, for example, by breaking a few bricks. The fact is that slugs can easily move on a flat and damp surface, but they cannot move along "sharp", dry terrain.
And of course, do not forget about the birds, however, they can also cause harm - by pecking the tops of the cherry or sea buckthorn, destroying part of the harvest of irgi or blueberries, but at the same time they will exterminate all the slugs that they see on the site, so you can additionally hang out feeders in winter, and then in the spring the birds will definitely return to your site.
In addition to birds, hedgehogs are happy to eat slugs, so that they come to your site, you can organize the most primitive pond somewhere in the corner of the garden - just dig in a plastic basin and fill it with water.
Plants against slugs
According to a number of gardeners, slugs can be scared away even by the aroma of a number of "correct" plants, for example, such as garlic, sage, and of course, marigolds. You can plant these plants along the edges of the beds with valuable vegetables, hoping that the slugs will bypass them.
Hand picking slugs
In addition to all of the above, you can always put your hands on the fight against slugs, simply by collecting those that you find. Remember, however, that they are cunning creatures, wielding at night, and during the day they hide in secluded corners. To find them there is the simplest technique - water the soil and put pieces of slate, cardboard, plastic, iron and similar material on its surface. In the morning, pick them up, if there are slugs on your site, then almost their entire population will be concentrated in ideal, in their opinion, shelters.
Once discovered, deal with the slugs as you see fit. On our site, we simply carried them to the nearest landing, it was a pity to kill them.
Wall or barrier made of ordinary soil. It can be built around the perimeter of the site using wet soil, which, after drying, will not lose its shape. At the same time, before the barrier, as well as after it, the soil can be generously sprinkled with spruce needles or, say, perlite, so that the slugs can get over it as difficult as possible.
Instead of a wall, you can make grooves, for example, two or three with a distance of a couple of centimeters, also 2-3 cm deep and the same width, on the bottom of which you can pour dry sand, finely stuffed shells from any nuts, wood ash and the like.
You can protect young trees with simple river sand, it is enough to make something like a small roller enclosing each tree.
Oddly enough, but water can also help in the fight against slugs, which adore everything wet. To do this, cut the old irrigation hose lengthwise, dig it slightly into the soil and fill it with water, possibly with the addition of table salt (tablespoon per liter). Usually, getting into such a groove with water and salt, slugs can no longer get out of it and quickly die.
Beer is good
Gardeners and gardeners claim that regular beer also helps in the fight against slugs. It is better to use what is in a plastic container, there are a minimum of natural substances, and the smell comes out very strong and attractive for slugs.
First, the bottle must be stripped of its neck so that the width of the trap is large, then pour 100-150 g of beer and dig the bottle into the soil so that its edges are strictly at the level of the soil. This is a real trap, which in terms of effectiveness is comparable only to trapping belts on trees.
One such trap can collect up to 90% of all slugs from your site. For those who are especially sluggish, you can advise the bottle not to bury or cut, but to put it as close as possible with the neck to the soil, the slugs will crawl there too, although the effectiveness of such a trap will be noticeably lower.
Other folk remedies for slugs
Hot pepper, more precisely, its broth. To prepare a decoction of hot pepper, you need to thoroughly dry the pods of hot pepper, and then grind them, ideally in a coffee grinder. Next, in a liter of water, you should dissolve about 50 grams of the powder obtained in this way (which you can buy), let this composition brew for three days, then put on fire, bring to a boil and let it stand for a couple of days after that.
Keep in mind that such a decoction is well stored, so it can be made once - and for the whole summer. It remains to strain the broth, fill the spray bottle and, in calm weather, so that the broth does not get into the eyes, spray the plants thoroughly. In order not to harm the plants, it is advisable to carry out processing before or after flowering. If the weather outside the window is damp and there is no clearance in the clouds, and the slugs are pestering, then soap can be added to the solution to create a sticking effect. A liter is enough for 20 g of laundry soap.
Superphosphate can be added to the row spacing, its amount should not exceed 20 g per square meter, or slaked lime can be scattered in the same amount.
A mixture of lime and tobacco dust is sometimes used successfully. The amount of both should be equal and amount to about 50 g per square meter. If there is no lime and tobacco dust, then a mixture of ordinary wood ash and ordinary tobacco can be used in the same amount and in the same way, and this mixture can be used to dust not only the rows, but also the plants themselves.
Iron sulfate is the real poison for naked slugs. For a greater effect, ferrous sulfate must be mixed with river or ordinary building sand and scatter this composition around the perimeter of the site. As soon as the slug crawls onto such a mixture, it will die in a few seconds.
A mixture of soot (from the oven) and tar gives the same effect. These two "ingredients" can be used as a mixture with each other or separately. For example, tar, which has a well-known "aroma", scares away slugs, so sometimes it is enough to soak pieces of cloth with it and place these strips near or under plants.
Surprisingly, they fight slugs using even simple pharmacy brilliant green. The bubble is enough for ten liters of water, as soon as it is poured, stir well and the plant treatment agent will be prepared. It repels pests and the smell of ammonia, and it only needs five tablespoons per ten liters of water - this composition can also be sprayed on plants.
Moving on to chemistry
We remind you that chemical preparations have a negative effect not only on slugs, but also on the soil and plants around, on beneficial insects, to one degree or another on you and me, so you need to resort to their help in special cases when slugs there are so many on the site that it is impossible to cope with them using folk remedies.
The vast majority of preparations for fighting naked slugs are based on the pesticide Metaldehyde. We strongly advise you to use approved drugs, carefully study the hazard class, which must be indicated on the packaging with the drug, and if it is higher than three (2-1), then you should definitely use protective gloves and a mask, treat the area in calm weather and strictly following the instructions on the package.
Of those drugs that are popular in the fight against slugs, you can call - "Thunderstorm" and "Slime-eater", these are granules or powder, usually lilac. The slugs eat the granules or powder and die quickly.
These drugs, like most other drugs for fighting slugs, have a negative effect on birds and pets, they may not kill them, but they strongly affect their health, which must be taken into account.
Also, if you use chemistry, then later do not eat vegetables and fruits directly from the garden or from the tree, you must first wash them, preferably in water heated to 35 degrees.
In addition to the described drugs, a drug based on iron phosphate is also known, it is "Ulicid" (also in granules, but more often of blue color), its effect is similar, but it is safe for pets and birds.