Slugs in the Garden: What to Do If You See Them

Slugs are known to be among the most damaging type of pests in the garden. If they are in a proper environment, a family of slugs can damage a vegetable crop in just a few days. Along with snails, these creatures can become destructive to your garden.


If you are worried about your crops getting infested by pests like snails and slugs, you must understand some of the facts about slugs. Some of the things that you should know are the things they love eating in your garden, where they live, as well as their predators, which will help you get rid of garden slugs effectively and permanently.

Understanding Facts about Garden Slugs

The first thing that you must do in dealing with slugs is understanding facts about them. Some of these ways are the following:

What Slugs Eat

Instead of only learning what they eat, one of the ways to get rid of them is knowing what they do not eat. Slugs can eat any kind of vegetation. However, they prefer tender leaves.

This means that the only ones vulnerable to slugs are seedlings and tender-leaved plants. Slugs also devastate fruits and vegetables, which results in unsightly damages to the leaves of your crops.

Where Slugs Live

These pests thrive in places where there is high moisture. When searching for slugs in your garden, try to look for areas where moisture is retained. The common places include:


Predators of Slugs

You should also know the predators of slugs. Knowing this vital information will give you an advantage over attracting these slug predators and help control the slug population in your garden.

Some of the predators of slugs are:

  • Chickens

  • Snakes

  • Ducks

  • Toads

  • Raccoons

Attracting poisonous snakes and toads in your garden is a great attempt to achieve healthy slug control and avoid damaging your plants.

Tips on How to Get Rid of Slugs in Your Garden

After learning more about garden slugs, you should now learn their favourite hiding place, how to kill them and get rid of slugs permanently in your home. By then, you can figure out solutions on how to kill them prevent further slug damage and protect your leafy greens.

Protect Seedlings and Tender Plants

Since these are the favourite food of slugs, you should protect them by creating a barrier that will not allow slugs to come in contact with the garden plants. You can use diatomaceous earth, copper tape/copper wire, or egg shells as ways to protect your garden.

Diatomaceous Earth 

DE or also called insect dust is in the form of chalky dust. You must wear protective gear during the application of the dust as it can irritate the lungs and eyes. To apply diatomaceous earth, simply sprinkle around individual plants or garden beds.

Mix it with water and put it in a spray bottle to make a foliar spray. Whenever it rains, make sure that you reapply the powder to keep it working against the slugs.


Copper strips, wire, or tape can be used by wrapping it around the lower part of plant pots like a ribbon. It will act as a fence around the plants and prevent the slugs and other pests from getting near any part of the plant. Just make sure that no part of the vegetation is hanging over the copper fence can act as a bridge for the slugs.

Egg Shells

Another way to get rid of slugs from your plants is by using eggshells. Just like the ones mentioned above, putting this around the plants will also act as a barrier or fence to prevent the slugs from damaging the plants.

Use a Slug Bait

Using an upside-down melon or a pan of beer, put it near plants where slugs may possibly reach. Slugs will drown in the beer trap while the melon rind will overstuff slugs. You can just dispose of the melon rind and beer after. Using slug traps prevents slugs and even snails from reaching vegetables, fruits, or even flowers.


Remove All Areas That May Retain Moisture

Slugs love moist areas, so you need to get rid of these areas as soon as possible. Containers and mulch are common areas where slugs may hide so check them. Make it a habit to turn over rocks, put footers under containers, and remove the mulch.

You may want to check on the areas with water trails since these areas will retain moisture and attract slugs.

Attract Slug Predators

Toads and non-poisonous snakes are the best predators that you should attract in your garden to achieve slug control. These are animals that only target small pests and avoid damaging your plants. To attract these animals, you can place toad houses or small woodpiles that they can use as homes in your garden.

When to Use Slug Control Products

Most gardeners would prefer going natural when dealing with these critters. However, if you are a gardener in search of a quick method to kill these slugs, you can turn to use pest control products.

Some of the recommended products you can try are:

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Ortho Slug B Gon Eco Slug And Snail Bait 500g
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Safers Slug & Snail Bait 1 kg
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Green Earth Slug + Bug Killer 200g
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GoGreen Diatomaceous Earth Baited 200 g

Aside from these slug bait solutions, you can also choose to use insecticides and insecticidal soaps as alternatives:

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Safers 3-In-1 Spray RTU 1L
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Safers Rose & Flower Insecticide RTU 1L
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Ortho Bug B Gon Eco Insecticidal Soap RTU  1L
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Safers Tomato & Vegetable Insecticide 1L
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Botanical Plant & Flower Liq Insect Killer 950ml

With these various products to consider using, you now got a lot of solutions in your hands that can help you in handling your slug infestation.