I love killing slugs. Is it wrong that I enjoy destroying them so much? I’m going with no. Those slimy creatures slither and munch my precious veggies growing in the garden. In the early spring, they are notorious. Their goal? To set up shop in vegetable gardens and multiply.
“Get off of my vegetables you slimy, slugs! I’m coming to get you. You can run, but you can’t hide!” Actually you can’t run. Call me slug hunter. My equipment checklist: head lamp, reading glasses, tweezers, old coffee can filled with salt for depositing the slimy creatures – and – the newest addition to the arsenal of keeping slugs out the vegetables – copper tape. The copper tape provides a “mild but unpleasant sensation” to the slug. Just the way I like it…
We applied it to the top of our raised garden beds. (Here’s how we built the raised vegetable beds.) Yes, we could have tried chemicals and poison but these methods work, they’re all natural, and they’re good for the earth. Try it!
How to Keep Slugs Out of Vegetable Gardens
1. Buy copper tape – it’s usually in the gardening department but check the roofing section, too. The tape we bought was in the gardening section, fairly wide, and expensive. We cut it down and got more pieces out of it.
2. Peel off the sticky back from the copper tape and attach it to the beds.
3. Make sure all gaps in the beds are covered with the copper tape.
4. Use a staple gun to make sure it stays put. Hey, we’re talking about slugs here. Only a few staples are needed.
5. Remove leaves from vegetables that have been munched and keep a close eye on your garden. Slugs that are trapped within your raised beds will continue to dine and munch on your plants – until you remove them.
6. Check your beds when the garden is wet and the light is changing. In the early morning or early evening when the the light changes is when slugs are out. Using tweezers, pluck them off your vegetables and cut them in half or drop them in salt. Do not compost them – they’ll multiple and continue to munch on your vegetables. (Read more about composting here.)
These same techniques apply to snails as well. Examine your garden for signs of these slithery creatures and get rid of them. They may slither but if they can get into your garden, they will live, munch, and destroy veggie starts or plants. Setting beer traps can help collect slugs in the garden but the copper tape should keep them out of those beds – for good!
What creatures do you have in your garden? How do you protect your vegetables and plants?
Go Gingham related links:
Saving seeds and reusing them in the garden!
How to stake tomato plants – a very stylishly frugal method!
My non-gardener-gardening-strategy – yes, non gardeners can fake it
Three easy herbs to grow – you won’t be able to kill these, I promise!
Growing vegetables in small spaces – I call it “sky gardening”