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How do I control slugs and snails?

Slugs and snails generally feast at night so you can go out and pick them off plants. If you don't feel up to stalking them at night, ring vulnerable plants with material that is uncomfortable to cross such as sharp grit or broken egg shells. Potted plants can be protected by placing them on feet, greased with Vaseline and then salted.

For a biological defence encourage lots of natural predators, things like ground beetles, birds and frogs. You can also buy nematodes (microscopic creatures), which aggressively search out and attack slugs. This is a natural, non-toxic product that is safe for both users and wildlife. The nematodes stay active for 6 weeks. Use in the spring when the pests are emerging and are most vulnerable.

For a chemical solution, scatter slug pellets thinly around vulnerable plants. These are usually coloured blue to prevent pets and birds eating them.