How to Get Rid of Snails In Your House and Garden [2022]

How to Get Rid of Snails In Your House and Garden [2022]

What Attracts Snails to my House Yard?

If you have a snail problem, the first step is to figure out what caused it. Like any pest, snails are probably seeking two things when they appear on your property: food and shelter.

Because of their slimy, moist bodies, snails thrive in environments that shelter them from the heat of the sun. They’re active on foggy, overcast, or rainy days,  and will feed on a variety of plants in the yard or garden.


3. Water your garden in the morning

We know that snails do most of their garden destruction at night. We also know that snails have more difficulty getting around on dry soil than they do on moist soil. So, if we put these two pieces of knowledge together, we have another way to keep snails and slugs out of your garden: watering early in the morning. This gives the top layer of soil more time to dry out before nightfall, which makes it more difficult for snails and slugs to get to your plants.

Is a chemical slug killer a necessity?

Although many gardeners use a chemical slug killer as soon as they spot slugs in their garden, it’s not always necessary, or recommended. Keep in mind that any slug killer with even a scarcity of a chemical component has an iimpact on nature and might affect growth of some plants. For this reason, experts claim that such method for getting rid of slugs should be used as a last resort.

Home remedies make a great alternative and help to get rid of slugs effectively. Products you use every day in the kitchen might keep slugs out of your garden. Some of the natural methods are surprisingly efficient, and at the same time – safe for your plants.


After Snails have been eliminated from your property, ensure they don’t make a return with preventative measures. Here are some tasks we suggest:

  Start by reducing moisture around your yard sinc

  • Start by reducing moisture around your yard since snails thrive in areas with high moisture. Do your best to reduce moisture around your home and yard and you will see a significant change in the snail population.
  • Rake and dethatch your lawn to improve air circulation. You can also trim back overhanging tree branches to reduce shade and try not to over mulch.
  • Water your lawn with 1 to 1.5 inches of water once or twice a week in the morning. This will ensure your lawn gets the water it needs and gives it time to seep into the soil rather than sit on the surface.
  • Also, reduce clutter around your yard, this means picking up dead vegetation, leaf litter, wood debris, stones, bricks, and any areas that might create a hiding spot for snails.
  • Remove snails or their eggs as soon as you see them will also reduce your population. One snail can produce 430 eggs in a single year.
  • Take a flashlight and at night, visit your garden. You might be able to reduce the egg population by simply picking them off and killing them in a bucket of water and a little bit of rubbing alcohol. They will appear in clusters of 40 to 100 eggs in the form of small creamy white balls 4.25mm to 4.0mm in size.
  • Tilling the soil regularly can also target eggs hiding beneath the surface of your lawn and destroy them.

9: Wheat Bran/Corn Bran

Small piles and rings of wheat or corn bran can be sprinkled around plants. When slugs and snails eat the bran it causes desiccation and death. This is a totally organic option and safe if wildlife eat the dead pest, they get a little extra nutrition. However you will need to replenish it regularly after rainy weather.

Bait and Trap

A good point to remember is that to bait gastropods is to attract them – so keep bait and traps a safe distance from any plants you want to protect.

The Beer Dish Trap Simply fill a shallow container with beer and sink it into the soil, then leave overnight. Slugs and snails are attracted to beer, glide over for a sip, then drown in it. Remove the corpses in the morning, and refresh with their favorite suds! Esschert Design Ceramic Slug Trap available on Amazon Containers can be as simple as a plastic deli dish, or you can opt for something a bit more decorative – like this cute ceramic snail. Hidey-Hole Trap Create a welcoming environment for slugs and snails to hide under in the daytime with any flat object, or anything that makes a nice gastropod den.

A piece of plywood, thick dark plastic, pot saucers, overturned containers, or anything that will provide cool shade will work. The rinds of citrus (like oranges and grapefruit) and melon halves make an alluring den for them as well.

Water the area first, lay down the trap material, bait with a piece of leaf lettuce if needed, and return in a day or two to remove and destroy the crawly critters.

2. Use Traps to Control the Mollusks

If you'd prefer not to use bait or poison, a trap is a good solution. Common homemade traps for snails and slugs include inverted grapefruit halves, overturned flowerpots, and boards.

  • Grapefruits have a scent that attracts the gastropods. When they crawl under the halves, they get trapped inside and die. Some great alternatives for this method are inverted melon or orange rinds and inverted cabbage leaves.
  • Overturned flowerpots work the same way: Pests move into the pots when they are tilted. Then, to trap as many pests as possible, leave the flowerpots overnight in the infested area.
  • Use a board, setting the wooden plank on the ground. The mollusks will come to hide under it after their activities at night. You can then lift the board during the daytime to kill them. A good alternative to the board is a black plastic sheet or carpet.
  • Other ways: An inverted saucer or any other vessel with lettuce leaves or other bait can also be a good trap. The pests will be attracted by the leaves or food items and get trapped inside.

Place Snail Barriers

Much to your dismay, snails in your garden likely have unrestricted access to their desired food source: the roots and leaves of your plants. Most gardeners want to get rid of snails while leaving the soil composition and microbiome of their garden relatively undisturbed. These gardeners need to look no further than the contents of their own pantry and garage. 

Natural items you may already have around the house can be used to create grating barriers that snails will be unable to pass over. Below a snail’s hard outer shell is the vulnerable, soft body they use to transport themselves around. Using irritating materials such as abrasive gravel, sharp eggshell fragments, diatomaceous earth, or rough wood chips will deter them from getting any closer to what they thought would be their next meal.

7 Ways to Get Rid of Snails in Your Garden

Getting rid of snails in flower beds can be tough.

Getting rid of snails in flower beds can be tough. After all, the garden combines all the things snails love most: moisture, shelter, and food sources.

Fortunately, it is possible to get rid of slimy pest snails naturally and organically.

Here are a few tactics we recommend:

1. Use Bait

If you have a can of beer in your refrigerator, you’ve already got an effective form of snail bait. A time-tested home remedy, beer contains yeast, which attracts snails.

For best results, fill a shallow bowl or wide-mouthed jar about halfway with beer. Place it anywhere you’ve noticed snail activity, burying the bowl slightly in the dirt to make it easier for snails to access.

When the snails come out to feed, they’ll smell the beer, crawl in, and drown. You can then toss the dead snails out. Other substances like grape juice and store-bought iron phosphate will work equally well as bait.

Pros: Effective, affordable, non-toxic, safe for households with kids and pets

Cons: You’ll have to set bait again and again to reduce your snail population

Note: Dry baits like methiocarb and metaldehyde are also available, but are not safe for kids or pets, and can kill domestic animals and wildlife. 

2. Use Traps

“How do I stop snails eating my plants?”

If you’re asking this, traps could be a great option. If you have snails in your lawn or garden and would prefer not to use bait, traps are a safe alternative. You can use an inexpensive homemade trap (like inverted grapefruit halves or melon or orange rinds scattered throughout your garden) or store-bought snail traps.

Regardless of which method you choose, traps work by emitting a scent that attracts snails, and then trapping and killing them when they arrive.

Pros: Inexpensive, easy to set, effective, a good fit for households who want to avoid poison or store-bought bait

Cons: Requires you to dispose of the trap and dead snails, traps need to be reset regularly, and may take weeks or months to fully kill a snail population. 

3. Use Barriers and Repellents

Barriers and repellents can be an effective method for getting rid of snails without killing them. Here are a few options for each:

  • Copper. Copper is an ideal barrier material for snails since the metal creates electric shocks that make it difficult for snails to navigate. Simply place a strip of copper around your garden or any other place you’d like to keep snails away from. It can also be effective to sprinkle copper fragments around these areas.
  • Diatomaceous earthDiatomaceous earth (DE) is a non-toxic material that is an excellent barrier or repellent for pests. The substance, which is made from fossilized diatoms, has rough edges that are difficult for snails to crawl over. While it will not kill them, it will slow them down.
  • Coarse substances. Coarse substances like ground-up eggshells, sandpaper, and lava rock will provide an effective barrier for snails. You can also get rid of snails with coffee grounds. Research has found that a 1-2% caffeine solution will kill snails, while coffee grounds will simply form a barrier snails do not like to cross.

Pros: Barriers and repellents are effective, affordable, and easy to deploy

Cons: You need to re-apply barriers, especially homemade barriers like DE, eggshells, and coffee grounds, regularly for them to be effective

4. Introduce Predators

Chicken, geese, and ducks are natural predators of snails and slugs, as are turkeys, frogs, beetles, nematodes, and birds. Introducing any of these animals into your yard is an effective way to control snail populations without using poisons and traps.

Pros: Effective, eco-friendly, safe for a household with kids and pets

Cons: Requires the introduction of another animal, may be difficult to manage in some households

5. Plant Snail-Resistant Plants

Some plants are less attractive to snails than others. The following varieties resist snails, slugs, and other gastropods:

  • Hostas
  • Lavender
  • Rosemary
  • Sage
  • Poppy
  • Geranium
  • Fuchsia
  • Nasturtium
  • Lantana
  • And other aromatics

These plants are beautiful and can be an effective barrier to keep snails out of your garden.

Pros: Affordable, non-toxic, eco-friendly, safe for households with kids and pets

Cons: Does not kill snails, is most effective when used in conjunction with other methods

6. Kill Snails With Salt, Chemicals, or Pesticides

If you want to kill snails, you can do so with salt. Salt, for example, absorbs water from mollusks, which dehydrates and kills them. Sprinkle the salt directly onto the snails or use a thick layer of it to create a barrier. Be aware, though, that salt can harm plants and other animals.

Garlic, iron phosphate, bleach, and store-bought snail control solutions will also kill snails.

Pros: Effective, affordable

Cons: Most effective when used in conjunction with other solutions

7. Adjust Your Watering Schedule

One excellent way to get rid of snails is to simply change the way you water your garden. Instead of watering it in the evening, start watering your plants in the morning. As long as your plants are still getting adequate water, the change in schedule should not affect their health. Watering in the evening will make your garden drier at night, which will make it less attractive for snails who come out to feed in the dark.

Pros: Effective, easy to do, affordable

Cons: Most effective when used in conjunction with other methods

9 Ways to Get Rid of Snails and Slugs in Your House and Garden

  1. Use bait.
  2. Use traps.
  3. Use barriers and repellents.
  4. Employ biological methods.
  5. Grow snail and slug-resistant plants.
  6. Use killing substances, chemicals, and pesticides.
  7. Kill and dispose of the mollusks manually.
  8. Change your watering schedule.
  9. Kill their eggs.

Each of these methods is described in detail below.

How to get rid of slugs in the garden? Use plants!

Plants that repel the pests are the best way to get rid of slugs in garden. If you grow ecological vegetables in your garden – consider adding the following plants:

  • garlic,
  • onions,
  • mustard,
  • marjoram,
  • savory.

How about flowerbeds? Are you wondering if you can protect them from slugs naturally as well? Of course! Many different plants can enrich the flower border and protect it from pests. They are, for instance:

  • chamomile,
  • yarrow,
  • thyme,
  • sage,
  • wormwood.

Some of them are beneficial for health, so you can use them in different ways. For example, chamomile and wormwood are good stomach remedies, while sage has anti-inflammatory properties and it can be used for acne-prone skin.

It is recommended to plant slug repellent plants on the extreme edges of beds. This way, the pests will be discouraged from further penetration of the area.

19: Water Your Gardens in the Evening

Slugs and snails are most active at night. This is when things are moist, and these pests need a moist environment to survive. If you water your garden in the evening you are unwittingly creating a haven for these pests and make them even more attracted to your garden and plants. You will likely see the impact of their nightly work on the leaves of your plants in the morning. If you water in the morning, the sunlight will dry your plants out before night time, making them less welcoming to slugs and snails.

It is also more difficult for snails to get around on dry soil than moist soil. So watering in the morning means you won’t have a moist environment at night.

Follow the above tips to keep your garden free of snails and slugs

Aumann’s Garden Supplies covers a wide range of mulch, top soils and pest deterrent plants to help with your gardening needs. Explore our range today, come in store, or contact us for more help!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.