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Weather and Slugs

  • Subject: Weather and Slugs
  • From: "Bill Meyer" <njhosta@hotmail.com>
  • Date: Sun, 2 Dec 2001 12:44:07 -0500

Hi Alttara,
        I'm no expert on slugs, but from what I see here it looks like most of them are killed over the winter. I suppose it's the cold that does this. For this reason, early use of slug baits is very important. If you get the survivors early in the spring before they lay eggs, you really cut down their numbers through the first part of the season. I guess most of the ones we see now will die anyway without our doing anything, but of course some of them won't. Killing them now would almost certainly cut down on the number you see in the spring, so any little bit helps, but it's not real cost-effective.
         One interesting thing a lot of people don't know about slugs is that they do migrate as much as 50-100ft, so killing all of them in a bed is only temporary as more will move in. If you spray with ammonia/water solutions, spraying the lawn and other areas well out from the beds will help control them.
         Here's something strange-------- I was out baiting mouse-traps with peanut butter one day last fall, and set down the plate with the peanut butter on it. After a few minutes, no more than five or so, I found several slugs making their way straight towards it from three feet away. I've never seen anything act like so powerful a lure to them.
         Sorry, Jim. Don't know anything about huge hunter-killer slugs. Slugs do eat other slugs, even their own kind. This is good because once they've been poisoned, even with ammonia, other slugs come over for a snack and die too.
                                                                                             ........Bill Meyer

Does anybody know what affect this weather will have, on the slug population?

Although my hostas are all dormant, there are active slugs. Should I bait, to avoid an excessive population, come springtime, or what?


CBCTPLANT@aol.com wrote:

I sense disaster for spring. This
combination of warm weather, little if any rain (and  what rain there is
always followed by warm weather) , and lack of  serious weather staying
below 25 degrees, does not seem to hold much promise. Any experience out
there? Am mulching like crazy.

And for the first time in recent memory, my procrastination has finally paid off in that not only did I not get my bulbs in a timely fashion.........BUT........I am also enjoying the record-breaking temperatures to still be able to get bulbs into the ground! This never happens for us Scarlet O'Haras!
We'll have to compare notes in the Spring!

Maybe everyone else knows this, but while shooting the breeze at last month's great Hostas in Focus, I learned from the experts that a very important point to remember as we suffer through this late season drought.....make sure that your plants don't go into the frozen ground season DRY.  Be sure to water !

Happy winter worrying to you and yours!
Carol in CT z6/5

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