Every homeowner has had that hair-raising moment when they discover they have an intruder in their home, but this trespasser isn’t a burglar – in fact their movement wouldn’t even trigger the most sensitive of home security systems and they could easily dodge a CCTV system. This form of intruder is the hardest to catch even though it leaves a trail everywhere it’s been and it’s smaller and sneakier than a mouse. Yes you’ve guessed it – these imposters go by the name of slugs and are possibly the most irritating creature on the planet!
From ruining your plants to spreading germs around your kitchen, slugs are extremely hated by the human race, who are fighting a continuous battle to keep them out of their homes. Although slugs can be incredibly pesky, there’s really no need to impale them with various items of crockery in a bid to win back your home (this potentially contaminates your food!) Instead, there are some ethical options of eradicating the slimy beasts.
Call the Coppers – There’s an Intruder!
Certain metals, copper in particular, act as excellent slug repellents. They give slugs and snails a small electric shock when their body makes contact with the metal. If you have a problem with slugs entering in your home then you could place a copper gripper rod at your back door to prevent slugs from entering your home. Using copper plant pots or plant pots with copper feet can reduce the likelihood of your foliage being sabotaged by slugs.
Clean up your Act
Slugs love human leftovers, from beer cans to cigarette butts it seems the slimy creatures have a secret urge to party. If your garden is littered with cigarette ends and empty beer cans then this could be the reason behind the increased number of slugs visiting your home. Clear your garden and use an ashtray which you empty every night before the slug army plans an invasion, this should see the number of trails diminish.
Taking the Rough with the Slimy
One of the most effective ways of keeping slugs away from your prized plants is to surround them with a rough surface like grit or small decorative stones. Because of the slithering motion they use to move around, they find uneven rough surfaces painful to travel across. Decorative stones are great to use as flower beds and are easier to maintain than soil.
One of the most unethical methods of slug slaying is probably the most popular. Pouring salt onto a slug is a method used by many homeowners in a war against the invasive beasts. When salt hits the slug’s plasma membrane (which acts as its skin) the slug goes through an excruciatingly painful process which is called osmosis. This is where the entire contents of the slug seeps through its skin leaving you with a disgusting mess and the guilty conscience that you have partook in a brutal murder.
When eradicating your slug problem, consider the more environmentally friendly ways of deterring the beasts from your property. Slug pellets are always a last resort, but bear in mind that they are toxic to other animals and children so be sure to scatter them somewhere out of reach to other family members.
Written by Stephanie Staszko on behalf of Designo Garden Furniture who are online retailers of designer garden furniture for the home. You can drop Steph a line on Twitter @StephStaz where she posts home improvement news and views.