I give up with the Sluggo pellets...birds & squirrels eating them ASAP

Esther-B, Zone 7b
September 7, 2019

I tried to put the pellets into ceramic containers weighed down by rocks. Only to find them overturned, the Sluggo pellets gone. So I have a couple of heuchies which are badly shredded by slugs and a couple of hostas with some holes. Should I drench them with a 10% vinegar solution or some kind of ammonia solution? I want them to be able to prepare for the winter.

Comments (16)

  • lindalana 5b Chicago

    Put Sluggo under overturned saucers?

    Esther-B, Zone 7b thanked lindalana 5b Chicago
  • ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

    it is fall ... the battle may have already been lost ...

    it is a year round battle ... but anything you do now will reduce egg laying mommas... to reduce next springs population ... but nothing is going to make the plant look better this fall ...

    it 10% ammonia.. or 10% vinegar ... which ever is cheaper ... it is still pickling time.. so vinegar might be had at a bargain.. in big jugs ...


    Esther-B, Zone 7b thanked ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5
  • newhostalady Z6 ON, Canada

    Try a different kind of slug bait.

    I think piling up slug bait actually attracts animals. From what I read, you really don't need to use a lot of pellets, but scatter a few around. For problematic areas/plants, I will put 2-4 pellets right under the plant. Slug bait kills slugs and snails but also has something in it to attract them. Perhaps the attractant also is attracting the animals---and it is especially rewarding to find them in piles!

    This year I went to a presentation that talked about wildlife and animals that are a nuisance to homes and gardens (rabbits, squirrels, raccoons etc.). The one major thing I took away from the talk is that when you have a problem with a certain kind of animal, ask yourself "am I doing anything to attract this animal to my garden?"

    Esther-B, Zone 7b thanked newhostalady Z6 ON, Canada
  • Esther-B, Zone 7b

    KEN, what do I do with the 10% vinegar solution? Drench the soil of the affected plants? Pour it on their leaves?

  • arcy_gw

    The ammonia or vinegar has to hit the slug to kill it. It makes them dehydrate themselves--to death. I find Ortho's Get-A-Bug very effective. It lasts three weeks when sprinkled about. I apply spring and fall and then use the ammonia solution after each rain. I just love me a good slug hunt!! This year we have an AWESOME population of toads and frogs--they are also super helpful with slug control!!! But as far as the comment about getting ready for winter--the plant is prepping slug holes are not!!!

  • Jim Mat

    I recommend using Sluggo as directed. You are not.

  • ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

    you can put it in a spray tank .... go out at night and spray the whole plant .. undersides also ... or.. even after a rain.. when they come out ...

    as noted.. you have to hit them ...

    a drench is used to get them where they hide.. in the mulch or garden debris ... and it also kills the eggs.. which are probably being laid about now ... here is what they look like

    every one of those.. you kill this fall.. will not be a problem next spring ...

    i should have mentioned.. that it might not be best practice.. to lure the fiends to your plants ... ergo... put some bait traps away from the plants ... i used to bait in the back of the bed... near the fence ... away from the hosta ... or at the grass line ... because they hide in the grass during the day ...

    in fall.. you could pull back the mulch from the plants.. and then drench near the crowns ...

    or.. just move and leave them there.. lol ...


    Esther-B, Zone 7b thanked ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5
  • n2hostas (Kansas)

    What about snails? Do they chomp on Hosta?

  • newhostalady Z6 ON, Canada

    Snails? Yes, they do.

  • djacobz568sewi

    Slugs snails cutworms—— they all love tender hosta leaves!!

    Ken thanks for that disgusting link right before I

    newhostalady, the only thing I think I am drawing to my yard is the slugs who come for the hostas.......... :-) Oh, maybe a wayward raccoon who want cat food——- lol

  • pandora

    You could set small pieces of wood, rolled up newspaper, or clay pots on their side. Anything for slugs to hide under. Check underneath evey couple days. Scoop up slugs and stomp them.

    I always have to say, "sorry" and close my eyes, but sometimes I have to do it.

  • pandora

    Some people go out at night with a flashlight and grab the slugs. I tried that once, didn't find many slugs, but enjoyed the moonlight.

  • Esther-B, Zone 7b

    If I go outside at night, even sprayed-up with Off! all over, I still get bitten alive by mosquitoes. This year, I even had to go to my dermatologist for so many bites which continued to itch way past the normal interval. She gave me a steroidal cream. So going into the garden at night doesn't seem feasible. This year, I didn't put mulch down in the garden and the "landscape workers" blew away any remaining mulch with their leaf blowers. Is there something I can do during the day to get rid of the slugs? My Georgia Peach heuchie is a complete loss, with shredded leaves, but I hope to give it a chance to recover somewhat before the first frost so it will survive winter and come back in the spring. I am not concerned about slugs in the soil next spring unless they are in my grow-bags, as I hopefully won't be here next spring, but in my new apartment with all my hostess and heuchies on the balcony. Georgia Peach was by far the worst affected, and it's in a ceramic planter. A few hostas have a few holes in them, but nothing terrible.

  • Babka NorCal 9b

    Have you tried the liquid slug killers? Like Deadline. You just put a few drops around the base of the plant. I know it contains metaldehyde, but if you carefully put it on the soil surface under the leaves, no pets are going to lick it up.


    Esther-B, Zone 7b thanked Babka NorCal 9b
  • Esther-B, Zone 7b

    I don't have any pets that I allow to go outside, but still...the squirrels are always digging holes in my garden and in my pots, and the birds as well, looking for a nosh. I'd hate to poison them.

  • newhostalady Z6 ON, Canada

    It is generally known that heuchera don't have a lot of pest problems. I don't find slugs particularily attractive to heuchera. Have you entertained the notion that was is eating your heuchera isn't slugs? See the article I have linked.

    Esther-B, Zone 7b thanked newhostalady Z6 ON, Canada

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