Keeping Slugs and Snails Off Your Veggies Compassionately

Written by on May 25, 2014 in Food, Drink & Nutrition, Health with 3 Comments

Trinity | Trinityskitchen | May 25th 2014

Garden-April-2014-03As a conscious gardener, I am aware that unless we all start foraging again and totally return to nature (which certainly wouldn’t be a bad thing in this day and age), that our gardens will always be a little out of balance – no matter how kind to the earth we are. Yet, I am always seeking to find the most compassionate, resourceful ways to grow veggies whilst causing as little disharmony as I can along the way.

One of the biggest battles I have found with gardening in the UK, especially in Somerset (which appears to be rain and flood central at the moment) is how to stop slugs and snails from wiping out my entire crop of vegetables. These hungry little molluscs are the bane of most kitchen gardens and whilst I love all animals, it hardly seems fair that they’ve often eaten far more of my vegetable crop than I ever have…

A friendly way to keep out the slugs
Over the last couple of years I have found a successful, vegan friendly method of keeping our slimy friends at bay, without the need to kill them in the process. This involves making a little barrier around each plant using old plastic water bottles and copper tape. It really does work! We’ve enjoyed an absolute abundance of crops over the last couple of years to prove it.

 I’ve created a little video to show you exactly how you can do this here…

Find out which vegetables slugs don’t like to eat and grow them
The other thing I love to do, is to encourage salad herbs and veggies that slugs and snails don’t like to eat very much of, such as lemon balm, mint, nettles, sorrel, wild garlic and chives. These nutritious plants just pop back up naturally in early spring, throwing out a bountiful harvest until the frost starts to kick in at the end of the year again.  Lemon balm is a particular favourite of mine. Slugs and snails pretty much leave it untouched. Visit my lemon balm page for more here: “All about Lemon Balm – a must in any veggie garden”.

Encouraging other wildlife
Nature has a miraculous way of balancing things out, should we simply leave it be. Frogs, hedgehogs, toads, slow worms, some birds (like thrushes) and newts all love to gobble slugs and snails. Do whatever you can to encourage them into your garden and bring a more balanced eco-system. We created a wildlife pond, allowing it to populate itself naturally. It’s now a fabulous haven for frogs, toads and newts, which seemed to appear out of nowhere. We’ve spotted hedgehogs here and also our first slow worm here a couple of weeks ago. It all helps!

Frogs love to feast on garden slugs

Frogs love to feast on garden slugs

Slow worm from our garden - a good sign!

Slow worm from our garden – a good sign!

Don’t forget to let me how you get on and please do share any other tips and hints that you might have for your own successful, compassionate gardening along the way. Let’s inspire each other.

with love

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  1.' Susan says:

    We have raised beds. Would the copper tape work if we put it around the top of the boards surrounding the raised beds?

    •' champak says:

      2 circuit strips of bare copper wire 1/2 apart – the open wire creates a electrical condenser touching both creates an electrical shock – NO Batteries etc needed the longer the wire loops are the stronger the shock – fence staple the wire

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