[permaculture] Re: Snails eating up my red chilli (pepper) plant

Meg Mullett meg at kcnet.com
Wed Jan 15 17:31:24 EST 2003

Several ways to deal with snails and slugs.  I didn't see whether you're
talking about just a few plants or many, so some of these might not be

Handpick at night.  Best times to get them are between 10 and 11.  Crush
them completely or drop them into soapy water to kill.

Use barriers:

Snails and slugs don't like to cross over crushed eggshells.  Kind of
draw a ring around each plant with them (it takes a lot)

They also don't like to cross over copper.  There's a mild electrical
charge from it that stings them.  You can create a barrier around your
plant with old copper pipe or even copper wire.

Floating row covers, a cage around them of window screen...there are
many materials you can use...just basically make something they cant
crawl through.

I have heard of using soap barriers. "SlugStop" is a coconut oil soap


Jars sunk into the ground with an inch or two of beer in them attract
snails and slugs.  They crawl in and drown.  Apparently the yeasty smell
is attractive to them.

Natural predators are ground beetles, which like the same kind of moist
dark hiding places as the snails.  Don't kill them if you see them.

I think someone mentioned "Sluggo". Another is called "Escar-go".  These
contain iron phosphate.  The snails eat it, then quit feeding within a
few days. I don't know anything about the effectiveness of these
products, because I've not tried them. 

I've had really good luck with the copper pipe and eggshell barriers.

Good luck!

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