....So this is a big one, and I'm sure we'll all have a variety of solutions for each one. Please add what you've tried and what has worked. Perhaps to keep this discussion organized, we can make a topic / reply of each pest / solution.

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Slugs

I'm sure there are a lot of ways to deal with these slippery creatures..... here are a few I use (and please, add yous, as mine are at about 70% effective right now)

1) Planning. Plant your leafy greens (cabbages lettuces, broccoli, spinach, or anything the slugs have been eating) far into your garden.....away from the edges and grass.

2) Eggshells -- crush a few and place them in circles around the plants you'd like to protect. Make sure your eggshell "fence" goes all the way around the plant.

3) Check your plants and pick off the slugs. Some people squash them, but I just toss them far from my garden. Yes, they could come back, but then again I could never kill them all, and I don't think I gain anything by killing a few. And I don't think they're mean.....just hungry. Like me.

3) ) Beer. Drink a few and you'll forget about the existence of slugs. No...wait.....Dishes! Put small dishes of beer around the garden....I like to use shallow deli containers out of my neighbor's recycling. I embed them, so they're like a little pool of beer for my sluggy friends. They like the beer, and then they drown in it....so, I guess I do kill some slugs, but at least they die happy and drunk.

What do you do for slugs?
Rasied Beds surrounded by shell path works for me but where the garden meets the fences Its a free for all. I consider a dead snail as a good snail, but I haven't tried to kill slugs as some slugs are good I read but don't remember which so they live for now.
Putting fences around seedlings when you're transplanting them into the garden works well for me.
I use translucent plastic milkbottles with top & bottom cut off as my planting pots, and then I simply put the whole pot (remember, bottom is cut off) into the ground and slide it upwards to shelter the transplant from wind and pests. I pull it off once the plant is big enough to stand a few slugs, clean it, and reuse it.
Another kind of fence that works wonders is rosemary branches – I happen to have an abundance as there's a rosemary hedge growing crazy nearby. I've got the impression that slugs & snails avoid anything that is prickly.
Good luck!
This summer (North America) I tried potager gardening. Using organic supplements and found that I had very little in the way of bugs at all. I guess they can't find them if you don't have a veg patch. However I did use one dose of insecticidal soap to control aphids that a wash away with the hose. I didn't have any issues with bugs. Perhaps it was the cool summer that made the garden unhappy with hail and cold night temps that did it ... I don't know. Watching the snow fly on and off today.
Silver Beet still doing well though.
i feed my slugs and snails to the chickens agggh the circle of life' i recently shifted a whole pile of bricks and there were two baby milk tins full of snails hiding in there i couldn't believe it! I am trying not to use poison pellets although i have had to put them around over the top of my seedlings that are on two tables as my sunflowers were decimated by the slugs such a shame to lose them so tiny they didn't stand a chance. I dont know a good slug from a bad one maybe we could do with a swatch book of good and bad slugs???
I have used pest oil sprays - these are organic Eucalyptus, neem etc and work well on aphids. I also plant my plants in groups that can confuse the butterfly pests - they see one thing but smell another when garlic is near the cauliflower etc.

Yesterday was a lovely spring day, warm and sunny - cabbage butterflies were out in force - looking to lay eggs on my broccoli so I pulled up an old flowering onion and broke off leaves and spread them around the broccoli. Some butterflies landed then took off when they smelt the onion - confused! I also sprayed some of the pest oil - again the smell confuses them and they stayed away from my broccoli!

As for snails - my size 10 boot is the solution. I used to have hundreds of the big brown snails - spent 3 weeks methodically picking loads everyday last winter - this year have very few and can now keep on top of them. I have some plastic traps that help a little as well - beer is a good bait.

I discuss some other strategies on my blog.
Another great slug bait that lasts longer than beer (which goes stale pretty quickly) is mixing 2 Tbsps of flour with 1/2 tsp of yeast in a 500 mg yogurt container, then filling it with water and burying it so the lip is at the same level as the soil.

Personally, I've never found the eggshells or other slug barriers very effective, if your slugs have had a good chance to get their population rocking. The flour/yeast bait combined with hand picking are the only thing that's worked well for me so far. Though I've heard that homeopathy works well too -- that's right, squish up a slug and dilute it a whole lot, then spray it on your whole garden.

I'd be careful with the pest oil sprays, by the way -- just because something is botanically derived doesn't mean it's not toxic or harmful to plants. Neem, for example, will strip the waxy coating off leaves, making the plant far more vulnerable to fungal and viral diseases. Better to create an environment that supports aphid predators like ladybugs and lacewings, if you can.
I totally agree on that about the oils - I use them sparingly!

Tamara SunSong said:
Another great slug bait that lasts longer than beer (which goes stale pretty quickly) is mixing 2 Tbsps of flour with 1/2 tsp of yeast in a 500 mg yogurt container, then filling it with water and burying it so the lip is at the same level as the soil.

Personally, I've never found the eggshells or other slug barriers very effective, if your slugs have had a good chance to get their population rocking. The flour/yeast bait combined with hand picking are the only thing that's worked well for me so far. Though I've heard that homeopathy works well too -- that's right, squish up a slug and dilute it a whole lot, then spray it on your whole garden.

I'd be careful with the pest oil sprays, by the way -- just because something is botanically derived doesn't mean it's not toxic or harmful to plants. Neem, for example, will strip the waxy coating off leaves, making the plant far more vulnerable to fungal and viral diseases. Better to create an environment that supports aphid predators like ladybugs and lacewings, if you can.
I am trying comapion planting. Its hard trying to remember what likes what and what doesn't, will let you know at the end of the summer. Putting neem granules in the bottom of the hole with the seedlings seems to be help quite a bit with the white butterfly.
I have whitefly and I think mildew on the courgettes, can I spray for both of these at once or one after the other? I will be using the baking soda and water mix for the mildew and the vegetable oil and dish washing liquid for the white fly. Has anyone used these mixes or have a spray that will be more effective?

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