Slugs are eating my hostas

rita123May 4, 2006

Hi..I'm new to this board and hope someone can help. My hostas are just starting to open and already are under attack. Are there any organic products I can apply? I have 3 dogs....Thanks

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I think the sluggo brand or the escar-go are brands safe for animals. Do a search here on sluggo or slugs and you will be reading for a week. Slugs and hostas go hand in hand. Try diotomaceous (sp) also, but I believe must be replenished after a rain. For prized hostas, wrap a copper ring around the hosta, it will act like a collar, or barrier, that the slugs won't cross.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2006 at 11:23AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

anitamo is correct. Slug-go and Escar-go are pet safe (and effective) slug and snail deterrents.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2006 at 3:42PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

there is a hosta forum .... the topic has been covered to death ... try the FAQ's and the SEARCH function ...

the above are still chemicals ...

a solution of 10% vinegar or ammonia in a hand pump tank.. sprayed into the interior of the plant... will kill slugs...

the problem i have with 'attractant' baits.. is the idea of attracting more slugs to your hosta.. doesn't make sense if you think about it too long ...

good luck


    Bookmark   May 8, 2006 at 10:19AM
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I had a severe problem with slugs when I first started gardening. I was hand picking them at night. When I caught 100 in one night, I realized hand picking simply wasn't an option. Someone had recommended Escar-Go from Gardens Alive, and I've been using it ever since. It took care of my initial infestation, and I've only needed to use it 2 or 3 times a gardening season ever since. It's been about 3 or 4 years now. I stockpile it when I get a discount coupon (usually $25 off a $50 order, or $20 off $40) AND order through the Ebates link, where I get another 9% of my total order back ;)

    Bookmark   May 8, 2006 at 1:58PM
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I save my egg shells during the winter months, when hostas come in the spring, I sprinkle crushed egg shells around them and I haven't had a slug problem with the hostas since. I also sprinkle the shells around my Mickey Mouse elephant ears and the slugs haven't touched them since.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2006 at 11:58PM
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I put a circle of pennies around my hostas. Slugs won't cross the copper and it's cheaper than buying tubing and making copper rings.


    Bookmark   May 13, 2006 at 2:34PM
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lindac(Iowa Z 5/4)

I second the iron phosphate slug like magic....and if you have as many hosta as I do, circling with pennies and hand picking just isn't practical.
And ken, acetic acid is not a "chemical"?
I was just out now tossing a few tablespoons of an iron phosphate bait around some of the hosta in the way back....took about 5 minutes....
Linda C

    Bookmark   May 15, 2006 at 2:48PM
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While taking a compost class, the horticultural specialist recommended coffee grounds but they have to be quite fresh. I have many hostas and I sprinkle the grounds and I also sprinkle a slug control granule from Lowe's that is safe for pets. Seems to keep them under control. The specialist said the slugs eat the grounds and it affects their digestive or heart system I forget and kills them. I use this method more because it is free. You can go to Star Bucks and ask for coffee grounds they offer grounds for garden.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2006 at 6:53PM
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anyone from sudbury ontario canada and wish to connect for gardening buddies? if so please email me at or
my name is Theresa happy gardening

    Bookmark   February 25, 2008 at 10:01AM
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"said the slugs eat the grounds and it affects their digestive or heart system"

Caffeine is known to be leathal to slugs and snails. A ground, light roast/low grade coffee may work best...lighter roast normally means more caffeine.


    Bookmark   February 25, 2008 at 9:39PM
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Anyone have pictures of slug infested hostas?

    Bookmark   July 3, 2009 at 11:09AM
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