GARDENERS are battling a huge rise in “sleepless slugs” experts warn.

The UK is seeing a huge slug population explosion due to the warmest winter on record and a wet summer in 2015.

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Slugs have kept eating and breeding throughout the year, instead of going into hibernation as usual, because the temperature remained relatively high over the winter.

The warm winter has also meant an abundance of food supply for the slugs, meaning they are much bigger than usual.

Pippa Greenwood, featured on Radio 4’s Gardeners’ Question Time yesterday and urged gardeners to spend the bank holiday weekend manually hunting for slugs.

“A damp evening is ideal,” she said.

“Look out for the eggs as well as the slugs themselves.”

“They’re a couple of millimetres in diameter and are often in clumps.”

She also advised laying down natural nematodes such as Nemaslug.

“You can buy several million at a time off the internet,” she said.

“They’re totally harmless to other wildlife.”

 

Gardeners can help prevent slugs from eating their plants by:

  • Removing cover for slugs such as leaves and bricks
  • Putting copper tape around plants
  • Creating a rough area near their plants with crushed glass or sand
  • Putting plants by ponds so water-dwelling predators of slugs, such as frogs and newts, can keep their population down
  • Placing plants that repel slugs – such as those from the geranium family – next to those that attract them, such as Hostas
  • Chemicals should be avoided because they could be poisonous to other animals, such as birds, cats and dogs. If you do use slug or snail pellets, the Royal Horticultural Society recommends iron phosphate pellets because they are less toxic than Metaldehyde.
  • Nemaslug nematodes- which kill slugs by feeding off them parasitically are 100% organic and are safe for children, birds, cats and dogs and work extremely well even in wet conditions.

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Normal seasonal weather conditions, cold, frosty winters and dry summers, usually keep the slug population down, but this winter was significantly wamer with December 2015 being the warmest since records began in 1910, with temperatures sitting at an average of 7.9°C.

Fact: Slugs remain active when temperatures remain above 5C, and with little snow or frost, they have simply kept going through the cold months. They lay up to 200 eggs per cubic metre, and it’s estimated that the average UK garden could be home to up to 20,000 slugs (unless you use Nemaslug of course).

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If you have already applied Nemaslug this season then you will be already be seeing the benefits, but if you haven’t now is the time to start tackling the pests.

You can view the full range of Nematodes at Nematodes Direct where we offer both single packs of Nemaslug as well as Nemaslug programmes to keep slugs under control for the whole gardening season.

Click here to order your Nemaslug now

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By |April 30th, 2016|Nemaslug, Slugs|0 Comments

Some things you might not know about slugs

Potatoes are susceptible to slug attack later in the season than most other plants.  This means that you can delay applying Nemaslug till 6-7 weeks before harvest, when the tubers are most likely to be eaten by slugs.

Slugs will feast on your fruit and vegetable crop, including your:

  • Lettuce
  • Celery
  • Cauliflower
  • Cabbage
  • Brussel Sprouts
  • Asparagus
  • Strawberries
  • Tomatoes
  • Slugs will also attack the leafy parts of plants, especially hardy ornamentals like Hostas

 

Some things you might not know about slugs:

  • Slugs are hermaphrodite (have both male and female sex organs).
  • Each Grey Field Slug can have up to 90,000 grandchildren.
  • Slugs have approximately 25,000 teeth.
  • Slugs consume around twice their own body weight each day. If you consider that an average slug weighs 0.1 oz, it will consume an amazing 28oz of plant material in a growing season.
  • Young slugs tend to stay underground, feeding on humus (decaying organic matter). This creates an unseen menace, developing out of sight and just waiting for your young seedlings to be planted.

 

Slimy slug facts…

  • Each slug lays about 300 eggs in batches of up to 50 in crevices in the soil.
  • Slug eggs are slightly oval in shape, white in colour and measure 2-3 mm in diameter.
  • They hatch in 3 weeks in the spring, whilst eggs laid in the autumn can over-winter before hatching.
  • Slugs breed all year round. There are two overlapping generations usually with peaks of egg laying in March-April and September-October.
  • In northern Europe the life cycle takes 12-15 months.
  • Britain is the slug capital of the world.
  • Our moist climate, without the extremes of hot or cold, is ideal for them.
  • Each cubic metre of soil contains on average up to 200 slugs.

 

Nemaslug Slug Killer is the simple organic solution for slug control in your garden that is safe for children, pets and wildlife.

A regular regime of using Nemaslug every six weeks is the best way to keep slugs at bay throughout the growing season.

By |January 29th, 2014|Slugs|0 Comments

Know your British Slugs

Slugs can be a gardeners worst nightmare and can cause havoc in the garden.  It pays to know your slugs as that way you can combat them effectively with Nemaslug, your natural nematode pest control – environmentally friendly and safe for children, pets and wildlife.

 

Grey Field Slug

The most common and serious slug pest. Highly variable in colour (but usually light grey or fawn).  It measures 3 cm (1.5 inches).

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Garden Slug

Similar in size to the grey field slug, but with a much tougher skin. Usually darker in colour (grey to black), with their underside a distinctive yellow, which also characterises their slime trail.

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Keeled Slug

Grey in colour with a ridge down the back, they are generally larger than the Grey Field Slug (about 6 to 7 cm or 2.5 inches). On the whole they are regarded as mainly subterranean in behaviour, living and feeding under ground.

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Black Slug

This one is much larger than the others, measuring up to 20 cm (8 inches) and is black in colour (though the young stages can be yellowish with dark tentacles). As such, it can be very conspicuous in your garden.  This may lead gardeners to conclude that this is the most common slug and is causing all the damage, when in reality the real menace (the Grey Field Slug and/or the Garden Slug) is resting underground. There are also some sub species of this slug that are similar in most respects, except that they have a distinctive reddish brown to yellow colour.

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By |August 30th, 2013|Slugs|0 Comments

How quick is the British Snail?

For the first time Scientists at Exeter University have been studying the British Snail’s behavioral patterns and the answer is:

“1 metre per hour, according to Dr Dave Hodgson and his team at Exeter University,  who claims that they can cover a typical garden in just one night.”

The study which was initially intended to discover how the Lungworm, an infectious parasitic worm was spread by slugs and snails.

Lungworm which is typically spread by the consumption of Snails and/or dog poop, can be fatal in dogs, and owners are encouraged to be aware of the risks associated with the parasite.

Speedy Snails travel at 1 metre per hour

FACT: Snails often follow each others slime trails to piggy-back on the slime trails of other snails!

 

View our full range of Nemaslug Nematodes

 

 

By |August 23rd, 2013|Slugs|0 Comments

It’s time to apply Nemaslug

Following the recent wet weather, slugs and snails will be having a “field day” in your garden, and with the risk of frost almost over most areas of the UK should be safe to make their first application of nemaslug.

Nemaslug Slug Killer Tips:

Always put your Nemaslug / nematodes in the fridge as soon as they have been delivered.
If applying with a watering can make sure your watering can and rose is clean & clear of debris.

Don’t forget that the air temperature is not the same as the soil temperature – visit our gardening weather section for the soil temperature in your area.
Before applying your nematodes, have a quick hunt around for slug hotspots and treat those areas with a little extra Nemaslug.

Apply your Nematodes at the end of the day just before sunset to reduce the risk of the nematodes “drying out” before they work into the soil.

By |April 6th, 2013|Slugs|0 Comments