Organic method to bar the way to your crops
Slugs and snails are the bane of most gardeners’ lives, especially in a wet summer like this one – we didn’t even have a cold winter to kill them off.
However, help is at hand. I’m trialling a couple of organic products this year, the first of which is ecofective’s Slug Defence Barrier Granules.
They literally do what they say on the box – non-toxic granules which provide a physical barrier around edible and non-edible plants in pots or beds.
Unlike clay-based products (these are based on calcium silicate), they don’t wash away in rain or after watering, drying out quickly and remaining effective.
The granules are child, pet and bee safe, which is always good to know.
Easy to use
A big bonus is the ease of use – form a barrier around individual plants or groups – slugs and snails won’t cross it.
You can also use the granules as a decorative coating (they are bright white) for pot plants, which I did with my hosta Canadian Blue and its unnamed container mate – for the first time they still have leaves in July.
I also used them around my courgettes, both outdoor and in the greenhouse (it’s a bad summer here).
A bonus is that because they’re so visible, people now see the corner plant in my bed of Helichrysums and don’t step on it!
One thing to bear in mind – they work best in new compost or soil that doesn’t already have a population of slugs or snails.
Beware slugs in the soil
If there are young gastropods in the soil, they could get under the barrier.
Also, use gloves to apply the granules as they’re very drying to the skin and apply on a still day, as they can blow about.
The granules are long-lasting, cost-effective and a simple way to curb the slug and snail population in your garden and protect particularly vulnerable plants, as long as you use them liberally and keep up barriers, especially after wind.
However, if you have a big garden, you’re probably going to have to combine barrier methods with nematodes. Dig them into the soil at the end of the season to improve drainage.
Slug Defence Barrier Granules are available in 2-litre or 5-litre cartons.