Slug Lessons

January 21, 2010

Did you know slugs are hermaphrodites? That they have a breathing hole and lay up to 100 eggs at a time? We learned all of those facts yesterday while trying to figure out the best way to remove them from our winter garden.The parsley which had been big and beautiful just a week ago, is now gone and they have moved on to the purple cauliflower. The kids built beer "traps" (buried empty yogurt cups in the soil and filled with beer) and we are hoping that will make a dent in their destruction.And a quick update on the visiting cat situation: Tony Chachere's seasoning seems to be doing the trick. We just have to remember to re-sprinkle after the rain which is becoming a little more frequent these days, but that's a job the kids enjoy doing. I had such idyllic images of gardening with my kids: harvesting fresh veggies, picking zinnias, building fairy gardens. I never imagined I'd be sending my kids out to work in the garden with bottles of Italian beer and Louisiana pepper! If you have other slug suggestions, please share.
Mom said...

No advise but I'll be watching to see what others have to say. We battle the slugs every summer because they love our once beautiful Hostas. Sadly this past year the snails tipped the scales and seem to be winning. Only about a half of our hostas returned. Beer did not deter them and then we tried a child/dog friendly granular mixture which did not work either. Hope your readers have some good advise.

Dana said...

Ahhhhhhhh......thanks for the Tony's tip. The neighborhood cats have found my garden as well. Yuck, Yuck, Yuck.

Emily said...

Oh! I second the 'thank you'! The neighborhood cats have been driving us crazy too.

Now I just wish I had some tips to that would help *you*.

Francesca said...

Looks like you've found good ways to fend off your intruders! Some years, gardening feels more like a battle against pests of all sizes than actual digging in the dirt.

Francesca said...

Looks like you've found good ways to fend off your intruders! Some years, gardening feels more like a battle against pests of all sizes than actual digging in the dirt.

Juniper said...

Wish I knew some tricks, our basil and sage plants have been losing the war in our garden these last weeks. I thought I heard somewhere that a ring of crushed eggshells deters slugs.
Almonds wise, yes only way to know is to taste them.

likeschocolate said...

Man that is one skinny slug! Compared to the ones in Oregon. We don't have many here in Georgia. I am not sure why. Fantastic solutions to a problem.

morninglight mama said...

Oh, I think slugs are just so cool, but I guess not from the perspective of a gardener!

Although I have to say that I just had a blast explaining the concept of a hermaphrodite to JAM. "That... is SOOOOOO creepy!!" was the exact quote.

okijeepgirl said...

Been reading your blog and I love it!! I've gotten sooooo many great ideas from you! Thank you thank you thank you...you are such a wonderful, creative, etc etc Mom! I can't believe how big your little ones have gotten! Seems like forever since Okinawa! Ella and Willow look soooo tiny in photos from our time there!

My Mom swears by the beer trap, uses lids full of beer and then has the grandkids go collect the drunken slugs.

We just moved into our house and I've collected lots of books on gardening and the kids and I are so excited to plant our beds! Our first very own garden...spring can't come soon enough for us!!!

Look forward to reading how you're doing some more!!
Shelly

Dim Sum, Bagels, and Crawfish said...

Shelly, what a nice surprise and a very welcome blast from the past! Where are you guys these days? Would love to catch up more...send me an e-mail (it's on my blogger profile).Thanks for keeping in touch and for commenting.

Betsey said...

We are terrible up here in the NW. We use a NOT kid pet friendly (or probably little kid friendly) Ortho slug bait - all chemical warfare. The battle would be totally lost to those slimy critters - there would be no glorious bleeding hearts, full, leafy green Hostas, or anything for that matter in our perennial garden. Good luck finding a solution.

Love the picture! That is, indeed, one of the tiniest, skinniest slugs I have ever seen. 7th grade science does a whole section on slugs here. We've had all sorts of discussions :D .

Martha said...

Don't waste that good creole sauce on slugs. Just get some local ground red pepper flakes. They work well. I have also heard that making a fence with foil, the cut side up, rips their sluggy little bodies.
Good luck

Cindy said...

Wow! We are even great on gardening!

Cindy Adams-Ardoin
Tony Chachere's
Food Scientist

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