Let's talk about slugs

in the hot house

Ok, not the most savory subject to discuss, friends, but an important one: Slugs.

 Strange little primordial beings, they don’t seem to mind insecticide. Those slug-granule-thingies are merely an obstacle - slugs can work around them. Other anti-slug options are gross and even cruel. We don’t want you or the slugs to suffer.

Slugs eat leaves overnight like drunk spring-breakers eat in a 24 hr diner after the bars close - a bit of this, a bit of that - heaven forbid they just eat a whole leaf (or waffle). Nope! They need a bite or seven out of *every single leaf*.

So what’s a gardener to do? Easy: Get the slugs drunk.

Here’s what you do: 
Get some of that cheap beer you drank in college, that comes in green bottles (like Rolling Rock - and no judgement here if you still drink it - there’s worse beer out there, no doubt). 

  1. Pour out (or drink) about half the beer. 
  2. Get up under the plant they’ve been nibbling on and dig a little hole for the bottle. This is the trick: the bottle needs to be at an angle so that the slugs can crawl up the bottle on their way to the stalks of your plant. Lean the mouth of the bottle into the bottom foliage of your plant so that the slug goes “Ooh! Beer!” and takes a detour and goes into the bottle instead of up into your plant. Fill in the dirt around the bottle so that it stays put.

What happens next? Well, the slugs go in, get sloshed, and… they don’t come out. RIP slugs - hope it was fun while it lasted. Remove bottle, pour out beer and former slugs, recycle, repeat.

Image: Knight v Snail III: Extreme Jousting (from Brunetto Latini's 'Li Livres dou Tresor,' France (Picardy), c. 1315-1325, Yates Thompson MS 19, f. 65r)