Real World Gardener Controlling Snails in Plant Doctor

November 26th, 2015

REAL WORLD GARDENER Wed. 5pm 2RRR 88.5fm Sydney, streaming live at  and Across Australia on the Community Radio Network.

Real World Gardener is funded by the Community Broadcasting Foundation (CBF).

The complete CRN edition of RWG is available on , just click on 2RRR to find this week’s edition


Some pests in the garden love wet weather and seem to multiply overnight, munching their way through your vegie patch, herb garden and ornamental plants.
You know they’ve been there because of the silvery trails on garden paths and up the sides of pots.
If the day warms up quite a bit the trails dry to leave this glistening effect which can be confusing if you don’t know what causes it.

Predator of snails and slugs in your garden are worth having.

Listen to the podcast, I'm talking with Steve Falcioni, general Manager 

PLAY: Snails_25th November_2015
There’s big snails, small snails, but generally no non- native snail is going to do any good to your garden.
Unless of course you have their predators living in your garden like an army of ducks, one or two blue tongue lizards or perhaps some larger skinks.
If you have none of the above, then you need to try another method of getting rid of them and it’s best to use something that’s safe for children and pets.

snails.pngSnail pellets that contain Metaldehyde are poisonous to mammals, so does pose a threat to pets if used in the garden.

If pets ingest enough of it, it can be fatal; that is about a tablespoon's worth for your average dog and a teaspoon's worth for your cat.

Pet poisoning is usually due to the pet gaining access to the packet from say an unlocked garden shed, or from leaving piles of pellets rather than scattering them.

Pets are not always deterred from eating those pellets even with the addition of Bittrex, a bittering agent,so if in doubt, leave this one out.

Secondary poisoning to native wildlife is also possible from lizards, birds etc., consuming prey that have ingested the snail bait.

Sprinkling sawdust, lime, dolomite or coffee grounds around vulnerable plants is one way of controlling snails and slugs, but needs to be kept dry.

Not much use if you need to water your vegetables.
Snail traps consisting of beer are a good solution in the vegie garden.


Bar-sided skinks love snails.

By far the best method is to attract native wildlife into your garden with dense planting, and places for lizards, and skinks to hide so that they can come out and devour those pesky snails.
If you have any questions about snails or have some information you’d like to share, why not email or write in to 2RRR P.O. Box 644 Gladesville NSW 1675.

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