How can I keep the slugs from eating my beautiful hostas?

Betty Gaddis
by Betty Gaddis
  8 answers
  • Kathy Kathy on May 18, 2017

    Depending on the gardening you like to do. Natural pesticides or harsh chemical pesticides .

    Natural Pesticide/Nutrient for Hostas

    Supplies needed:

    Sprayer that attaches to a hose (Amazon)

    1 cup of Listerine Mouthwash (original)

    1 cup of Epson Salt

    1 cup Ammonia

    1 cup Ajax Dish soap (lemon)

    First add the mouthwash, Epson salt and ammonia to the sprayer container, stir, then top off the container with the dish soap, Don’t Stir. Place top back onto the container and hook up to the hose.

    Simply water your plants as usual. This remedy is safe enough to use on a weekly bases if you wish, I found that once a month is plenty. Any unused mix can be stored for the next use.

    Not only does this home remedy kill the bugs, it also provides your plants some much need nutrients and you will quickly see a big difference in your plants, trees and bushes.

    • Bko32207506 Bko32207506 on May 26, 2018

      What if you just put in a sprayer and don t use water?? Do you kill the plant

  • Rob7453153 Rob7453153 on May 18, 2017

    This is a big problem for anyone who has hostas. The garden centers sell diatomacious earth. It feels like a fine powder. Sprinkle it liberally around the base of each plant. A slug attempting to get up on the plant will absorb this onto its skin and die. Reapply after it rains. Much more effective than leaving dishes of beer out in your garden.

  • Nancy Jo Bowman Nancy Jo Bowman on May 18, 2017

    Jar lids or short dishes with beer will help with this. Also, shattered eggshells seem to be a deterrent it is so frustrating to have beautiful hostas and have slugs devour them.

  • William William on May 18, 2017

    Sink a few bowls or plates in the ground level with the surface. Fill the bowls/plates with (cheap) beer. The yeast attracts the slugs. They drink their fill and drown. Not their sorrows

    Anything you can make it uncomfortable for the slugs/snails to crawl on will deter them. A combination of solutions from everyone here should take care of them.

    Broken nutshells work in the same way as egg shells when getting rid of slugs. Break up the nutshells into small pieces, and create a protective barrier around your plants. Any slugs that come near your vegetables will soon turn the other way.

    Crushed egg shells work as a great home remedy of slugs. This is because slugs don’t like moving across sharp objects, although it isn’t not impossible for them to do, they just prefer not to. Break up the empty egg shells into small(ish) pieces and place around the flowers, plants, vegetables, and fruits you want to keep safe from slug damage.

    Ash and Cinders make a rough protective barrier, and the fine ash also acts as a desiccant that dries the slug out. Wood ash and cinders are preferable. Avoid direct contact with plants.

    Grit and Gravel. The sharp rasping edges of finely crushed ‘horticultural grit’ makes an excellent slug barrier. Coarser gravel is largely ineffective, other than for decorative purposes.

    Sandpaper. Cut rings of sandpaper and slip them round the stems of vulnerable plants.

    Sawdust makes a good coarse barrier around tender plants, also acting as a desiccant that dries the slug out. Hardwood sawdust is most effective, and some people recommend cedar or oak.

    Copper Rings or Discs. Solid copper rings/discs of various diameter, used to encircle single or small groups of plants to inflict a mild electric shock on the unsuspecting slug. Look for rings that clip together. These are easy to slip round established plant stems, or join together to form a larger barrier.

  • Elizabeth Dion Elizabeth Dion on May 18, 2017

    Put a dish of beer near your plants. They will climb in and drown.

  • Dmotan Dmotan on May 18, 2017

    You might want to try spraying with with hot pepper sauce and water. Put in sprayer and go to it. Under leaves too. Always have crushed egg shells at base all around hosta. Also a metal wire circling the hosta.

    If you have a lot of patience, bowls of beer will help but must be changed often. They crawl in and die.

  • Anne Wingate Anne Wingate on May 26, 2018

    Slugs hate crushed eggshells and diatomaicous earth. Surround the plants with one of these.

  • Rita Houghton Rita Houghton on Jun 17, 2020

    Can this solution be use on vegetable plants?