Slugs and Snails: 10 way to kill slugs and snails (Updated for 2023)

Although Slug and Snails both belong to the same Phylum and class in the Animalia Kingdom they differ at large in their families. Most of the garden slugs are placed in Onchidiacea and Soleolifera families of mollusks whereas Snails are placed in Muricidae family. Most significant difference between Slugs and Snails is their hard Exoskeleton or shell in Snails whereas it may be found inside the bodies of the Slugs that are not apparently visible whereas in case of Slugs, it is found on their bodies and they are capable of  contracting their entire soft body into the hard shells when disturbed or touched. So, in broader terms, Slugs are soft-bodied mollusks while Snails are hard-bodies due to their spiral hard shells. They are common in their feeding behavior as both are voracious eaters and can eat up and destroy any garden’s seedling overnight.

They are also night riders while keep themselves hide under large leaves during the day. They also get confused during cloudy weather and may come out to start feeding during the day while their salivary imprints may cause annoyance for the gardeners and heavy eating may result in considerable plant damages when they are around.

Let’s search for some quick solutions that will lead us the way how to get rid of slugs and snails in your organic garden and on the Cannabis plants.

How to get rid of Slugs and Snails

#1 Espoma-Slug and Snail Bait (Chemical – Editors’ Choice)

Slugs and Snails killer but safe for the environment as this bait contains Ferric Phosphate that is recommended to be used in organic gardening. Both slugs and snails are most active in spring and summer when humidity is high around your gardening plants especially Cannabis, vegetables and other leafy greens including the plants that have broad leaves to shelter these voracious eaters. So, applying during these periods will perform much better while you can repeat its application if the infestations are high.
How to kill slugs and snails effectively without poisonous chemicals is possible by using this bait that is a highly effective product and is eaten by the all traits of garden slugs and snails that cease on further eating and leave that space to die under shade. Apply on the bare garden surface encircling the plants needed to be protected from the slugs and snails. Avoid its direct application on the leaves as it may burn them. Apply 1 teaspoon pallets in 1 square meter while the pack may be speeded in 120 square meters. 3-4 applications are recommended during the entire growing season for cleaning slugs and snails on the Cannabis plants.

#2 Slugs Gone Wool Pellets (Natural – Editors’ Choice)

Wool Pallets are a combination of sheep wool and manure that act as a natural deterrent upon getting moisture through watering or by rain showers. Open the pack in a well-ventilated place as they have very bad odor and takes time to dissipate if opened indoor. They swell on getting moisture to make wool turf that doesn’t let pass snails and slugs as they hate irritation on the mollusks underneath their bodies, they contract and retract to move forward. It an organic remedy and doesn’t use any chemicals inside.
Safe for organic gardening, safe for children and pets around while easy to apply. Apply around the pots, containers or the raised bed where you are growing your Cannabis and other edible green including vegetables, fruit trees, and ornamental plants. It saves moisture and inhibits weeds growth as well. Uninterrupted banding around gardening plants will perform better than just spreading or piling up pallets in the garden area.

#3 Beneficial Nematodes

It contains several strains of nematodes. These beneficial nematodes parasitize Slugs that are around when applied under moist conditions. They stick to bodies of slugs & infect them until they are killed. The beneficial nematodes are harmless to humans, pets, and bees in the garden while they can be released to save Cannabis, herbs, vegetables and leafy greens in any organic garden. They live on the bodies of slugs and don’t feed or infest plants.
This pack is received in moisturized condition and they perform the best at the temperature above 40°F. they also chase slugs when they go underground and kill them at the spot. Don’t release nematodes in the garden if you have already applied some bait as it will kill beneficial nematodes. The beneficial nematodes remain active for 6 weeks and need reapplication after that period. It is sufficient for 200 square meters of area in your Cannabis garden.

#4 That’s It Snail Bait 7.5 Metaldehyde

This bait contains 7.5 % of Metaldehyde that is attractant and killer of all strains of Slugs and Snails in any organic garden. It not safe for the chicken or birds in our garden. Cautions must be taken to clear all dead Slugs and Snails early in the morning before the birds or hens arrives in your garden.
apply it in thin layers instead of mounds. It to suggested to apply water before you plan to scatter this bait in your garden. Pause watering until 24 hours after you have applied it to the Cannabis or other gardening greens in your edible garden.

#5 Copper Sulfate/Dry Powder

This pack contains 99.9% of Copper Sulfate. Although, it is widely used to control blight, leaf curl and scab on fruit plants it can be successfully used to Deter Slugs and Snails in an organic garden especially on the Cannabis plants. Dissolve Copper Sulfate in water and apply to make borders to stop Slugs and Snails feeding. The solution can also be used for spraying or making bands to Deter Slugs and Snails in your Cannabis garden.
some ready-made formulas might be available in the market but a fresh formulation has its own advantages that can be made according to the need and is more effective. Spray directly on the plants to stop snails and slugs from feeding on your edible plants or use as band-spraying on the passage they use to invade your lovely plants.

#6 Slug and Snail Defense Repellent Spray

It’s a derivative from a natural plant source and is placed in an organic plant defense list that doesn’t let slugs and snails reach your favorite garden plants if you have created a thin film on the leaves of the Cannabis and other gardening greens. It smells decent while it keeps the slugs and snails away from your garden. It can be successfully used on Cannabis, vegetables, fruits, and herbs in any edible garden.
Spray on the entire plant foliage using a mist sprayer and walk slowly so that the surface leaves receive a reasonable amount of mist to wet them. Apply when the infestations are high during spring and summer in high humidity conditions. Reapplication is required if it rains immediate after its application to the garden area.

#7 Southern Ag Snail & Slug Bait

What kills slugs and snails instantly is the Metaldehyde 3.25% active ingredient contained in the pallet form in this blue bait. There might be some other baits available online with more percentage of Metaldehyde up to 7.5 % but it is better to stick to lower poison ratios for the possible threats to your pets like Dog, hen, and birds around. It kills the entire range of slugs and snails preparing to raid your edible greens, Cannabis, vegetables, fruits and nursery seedling including herbs and broadleaf plants.
spread these pallets evenly around and near gardening greens in the evening as the slugs and snails feeding is limited during the night or a cloudy day. 1 pound of pallet bait covers a 100-130 square meters garden area. It doesn’t simply kill all existing voracious eaters but doesn’t let enter them into your garden space.

What are slugs and snails?

What is the difference between a slug and snail that guide us on how to identify slugs and snails when they are present or suspected in any edible garden is not difficult if you are aware of their eating behavior, biology and structure. i.e.

  • Slugs are soft-bodied mollusks whereas Snails have hard, twisted exoskeleton to which they are capable of contracting their entire soft body into the shells when disturbed.
  • All Slugs and snails are voracious eaters of dark green leaves at night and seldom appear during the day to feed on your gardening greens except for the cloudy days.
  • Both traits are feared to leave a similar goop track on their passage and on the places where they feed in any garden.
  • Both Slugs and Snails are capable of moving by contraction & retraction of their mollusk foot underneath their bodies.
  • Both Slugs and Snails are bisexual that can lay eggs after breeding with each other.
  • Another difference between Slugs and Snails is that most of the garden slugs are placed in Onchidiacea and Soleolifera families of mollusks whereas Snails are placed in Muricidae

How to prevent Slugs and Snails in the garden?

  • Remove weed covers, plant debris, and broken earth pods as they serve a whacking place for Slugs and Snails in the daylight.
  • Your garden must be inclined to receive sufficient direct sunlight. Remove any hindrance, ground covers or obstacles that provide shelter.
  • Regulate garden watering in the morning so that there is minimum moisture during the night.
  • Use wide copper bands around the boundary of your garden as Slugs and Snails receive an electric shock on coming directly in contact with Copper bands & change their route.
  • Plants that repel slugs and snails must be part of your garden. Consider planting Lantana, geraniums, Thyme, Lavender, Rosemary, and sage as part of herbs garden for producing highly adorable scents and cooking flavors.
  • Continue hand-picking of Slugs and Snails from their sheltered places like beneath broad leaves, fences, hedges or underneath pots and weed covers.
  • Make arrangements for burying beer containers inside the garden soil to trap and kill them.

How to get rid of slugs and snails with coffee?

Coffee grounds help you to deter slugs and snails along with enriching garden soil with essential nutrients like Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Potash in combination with micronutrients and minerals as a slow-release fertilizer. The coffee grounds can be scattered on the garden soil followed by watering them immediately will deter Slugs and Snails those want to come to harm your gardening greens including Cannabis and vegetables and for this purpose, you can use;

#8 IUDUH-Colombian Coffee Supremo Bean Dark Roast-Fine Grind

One of the cheapest Coffee’s available online in just $ 0.15 per ounce.
1-2% Caffeine foliage spray can also be used to Deter Slugs and Snails that can be prepared by adding the prescribed amount of Coffee in the solution.

How to get rid of slugs and snails with beer?

Beer is another best organic remedy to invite and kill Slugs and Snails that are supposed to harm your gardening greens. A wooden or plastic container is buried into the garden soil away from the plants and beer is poured into it. Slugs and Snails are invited to fermentation smell and drowned into the liquid that dehydrates them to kill. You can use this beer container for this purpose;

#9 Slug Snail Catcher Beer Bait

Easy to bury into garden soil. Just fill it with beer or yeast liquid to collect trapped slugs and snails. Wash it and use again at the same location. You need to install a number of traps in the passage slugs and snails use to arrive at your favorite gardening greens and Cannabis plants.

How to get rid of slugs and snails with table salt?

Table salt (NaCl) or Sodium Chloride also serves as a powerful killer against all strains of Slugs and Snails in any organic garden but it would be hard on you to see them dying gradually after you applied finely ground salt on their bodies. Large flakes of salt will not stay at their bodies while it is necessary to throw water on their bodies before applying finely ground salt. Table salt dehydrates them and they are killed after all moisture is gone from their mollusk bodies. Don’t sprinkle salt on the plant foliage as it may burn leaves of your lovely plants such as vegetables, Cannabis, and herbs.

#10 Rentokil Slug and Snail Killer Pellets

Rentokil pallets are similar to Ferrimax in their active ingredient and properties but designed for weathering protection and will continue their efficacy even after rain showers. This is an organic remedy that doesn’t need protecting it from your pets, bees, and birds since it decomposes and adds to the fertility of gardening soil.
Yes! Ferric Phosphate also called Iron Phosphate is active salt and can be used 5 grams per square meter area in your garden to save berries, vegetables, Cannabis, herbs, and microgreens to create barriers or spreading around these plants.