How to Kill Slugs With Caffeine


Slugs and snails are able to inflict damage to almost every part of your plants, including the leaves, flowers, fruits, and tubers, and they may even transmit illnesses that are hazardous to humans. The use of coffee and coffee grounds as a repellent and elimination strategy for slugs and snails is one way that may assist. Slugs and snails are dangerous pests.

Slugs and Snails

Mollusks, such as slugs and snails, may be particularly devastating pests in a garden because of their feeding habits. You won’t see them during the day very often, unless it’s been raining, but the damage they caused while eating at night will be obvious during the day. They will consume almost any kind of plant matter, including decomposing plant matter that is found on the ground.

It’s possible that the leaves of your plants have holes in them. They have a preference for succulent plants, and it is well known that they will consume seedlings. They will also consume some bark and the leaves of trees, despite the fact that this isn’t their first choice. The University of California Statewide Integrated Pest Management Program recommends looking for a track of mucus left behind by slugs even if you don’t see the slugs themselves. Slugs leave a trail of mucous behind them as they move.

According to the University of Hawaii Cooperative Extension, snails and slugs are both capable of carrying the dangerous parasite Angiostrongylus cantonensis. If you consume fruits or vegetables that contain the pathogens that the snails left behind, you run the risk of becoming infected with the parasite. This parasite is known to cause lung illness in rats, and it is possible for slugs to acquire this parasite through rat faeces. The parasite has been linked to cases of human eosinophilic meningitis in certain cases. It is not very usual for people to get these diseases; nonetheless, if you have slugs on your property, you should eliminate them as soon as possible and ensure that your crops are completely cleaned before eating them.

Caffeine to Control Slugs

If you want to keep slugs and snails away from your yard, one piece of advice you could get is to use coffee grounds. Slugs and snails don’t like coffee grounds. This proposal is most likely based on a research that was carried out in Hilo, Hawaii, in the year 2002. According to the University of Minnesota Extension, when researchers employed sprays containing 1 to 2 percent caffeine in an effort to reduce invasive frogs, they observed that slugs and snails were removed instead of the target species.

Coffee has no more than around 0.7 percent caffeine, which is not enough to get rid of snails and other similar pests. Caffeine, even in lesser amounts, may be useful in warding off slugs and keeping them away from your plants.

To use this strategy, the National Gardening Association suggests boiling some coffee with caffeine and then pouring it into the soil surrounding your plants. This will help stimulate the growth of your plants. Be careful not to spill the coffee on the plant’s leaves, since it might kill off some of the helpful insects that live there. Even though there are no studies that prove it, many gardeners feel that using used coffee grounds is beneficial to their plants. The University of California Master Gardeners of San Bernardino County suggest that if you wish to use this strategy, you should spread them out as a mulch around the plants and place them on the surface of the soil.

Other Slug Control Methods

In addition to the use of caffeine as a deterrent and eradicator of slugs, there are additional approaches to slug management that should also be taken into consideration. You should do as much cleaning in your yard as you can in order to get rid of the places where slugs are likely to spend their days. This consists of weeds and other plant matter, as well as woodpiles and stones. Slugs are most successful in wet environments; thus, you should consider using drip watering rather than sprinklers and ensure that the soil drains well. Construct barriers to prevent tender plants, particularly seedlings, from being damaged. You may do this by putting copper mesh all the way around the plants. You may prevent slugs from crawling into planters by creating a belt around the planters out of copper foil and wrapping it around the pots. Dry diatomaceous earth also produces an excellent barrier, but using it in gardens, where you most likely irrigate on a regular basis, makes it impractical to do so. If you come across a slug, you should either pick it up by hand, smash it, or dump it in a pail of soapy water.

Create barriers to protect vulnerable plants, especially seedlings. You can do this by surrounding the plants with copper mesh. You can use copper foil to create a band around planters to prevent the slugs from climbing into the planter. Dry diatomaceous earth also creates an effective barrier but isn’t usually practical in gardens since you are likely irrigating regularly. If you see a slug, pick it by hand and crush it or put it in a bucket of soapy water.