It’s that time of year again, the march of the snails! You may have seen them and if you haven’t go outside barefoot and you will feel them! Snails and Slugs are harmless to humans but can destroy your garden.
Snails and slugs are similar in structure and they are among the most bothersome pests in many gardens and landscapes. Slugs include the gray garden slug, the banded slug, the tawny slug and the greenhouse slug. Slugs are hermaphrodites and can stretch to 20 times their normal length, enabling them to get to seemingly unreachable food sources.
Both snails and slugs use a muscular “foot” for movement, which secretes mucus, which then later dries to form a silvery slime trail signaling the presence of either pest. It’s like a trail of bread crumbs leading the originating slug, along with others, directly back to the host plant to feast at another time. Host plants that are particularly susceptible to snails and slugs include basil, beans, cabbage, dahlia, delphinium, lettuce, marigolds, strawberries, our beloved hostas, and many other vegetable plants.
Have you ever lifted up a rock and seen a grouping of at least 80 spherical, pearly white eggs in the topsoil? These are probably the work of an adult brown garden snail, two years of age. They may lay eggs up to 6 times a year! Slugs, on the other hand, mature after only 3 to 6 months, and lay clear oval to round eggs in batches of 3 to 40 under leaves, in soil cracks, and in other protected areas. So don’t let the leaves from your deciduous trees remain in corners where you think visually it won’t matter.
We recommend Bonide Slug Magic, this will kill the snails and slugs but not your plants. Please do not put salt on them, the salt will damage your lawn, plants and flowers.