Snails and slugs
Outdoor cultivations do not require the use of as many tools as indoor cultivations, on the other hand the quantity of parasites that we have the possibility of finding increases.
Snails and slugs can cause serious damage to crops even if they move slowly and are easily identifiable, following this guide we will teach you how to fight and protect yourself from this serious threat.
The body of snails and slugs is slimy and soft, they range in size from 1 to 9 cm. Snails in particular have a shell that is the "home" of the mollusk itself.
The slowness of these little animals is proverbial and they leave a trail of clearly visible, shiny and transparent mucus. Snails usually come out of their shells in spring because they don't like the winter climate, however it is often possible to spot them after a rain because they love humid environments. Snails and slugs have an interesting peculiarity: they are hermaphrodites, even if they cannot self-fertilize and therefore always need another individual for reproduction. The opalescent colored eggs laid have a hatching period of approximately 30 days.
What signs indicate the presence of snails or slugs in plants?
It is not uncommon to find these parasites on our plants, usually in spring in the vegetative growth phase, it is important to intervene because it is a phase in which the plants are not yet robust and therefore more delicate.
During the day it is more difficult to see them because they sleep, while at night they come out to eat, they hide in the shade, under bricks, boulders or trunks as long as the environment is humid and dark.
To recognize their presence, pay attention to these things:
- Bites on leaves, with spider web shape. You can also find them on the roots of plants.
- Mucus, the trail of mucus is a sure sign of the presence of snails or slugs.
- Observe the plants at night with a flashlight, preferably with a green light so as not to disturb the plants' sleep.
Prevention against snails and slugs
Prevention is naturally the best method, when the period of possible onset is the ideal one follow these tips:
- Water your plants early in the morning before the sun rises, in order to maintain a less humid and therefore less pleasant environment for these parasites.
- Avoid using drip irrigation systems and try to keep the substrate less wet.
- Try to ideally fence the cultivation by creating a strip of dry soil and form a barrier with lime or sea sand or salt. This constitutes a physical perimeter that prevents the intrusion of snails and slugs.
- Build a trap by simply creating a damp shaded area, with a tile for example in order to create a comfortable refuge, so I could check if these parasites are present.
Intervention in case of presence of snails and slugs.
The moment you realize the presence of these parasites you must act immediately, they are voracious and will bring serious consequences in a short time.
- If he hasn't already created the barrier, do it immediately to avoid the arrival of other companions or in any case their return after you have eliminated them.
- Build a bait by making a small hole in the ground and put a small glass with beer or jam inside, they will be attracted by falling into it and getting entangled or drowning, place several traps near the plants.
- Introducing a predatory insect, in this case the Rumina beaded, is very useful even if it will not completely eliminate the problem.
- Remove them manually, the best time is at night when they are awake and eating, use a flashlight, individualize them and eliminate them.
By following these simple tips you will no longer have snail or slug problems.