Kill Snails and Slugs with Beer

by Doris Donnerman
(last updated July 26, 2008)

In the first few years of my marriage we lived in the country, and our home was surrounded by lush grasses, creeks, trees, and flowers. We had a large garden each year, and each year I fought with a pest as to who would harvest my lettuce bed first—me or the snails, and their cousins, the slugs. To make an annoying pest even more hated, each night they left slime trails up and down the length of our 36-foot wood porch, as well as the outside of our house. Late afternoon and evening clearly showed the pathways the snails and slugs took the night before, because our house was crosshatched with their slime trails that glistened and hardened during the heat of the day. When I'd go to pick lettuce from the garden, the snails had beaten me to it, making a Swiss cheese pattern on each lettuce leaf, as well as chewing through the foliage of my irises, destroying their beauty.

While we had a few snails, we had the greater portion of slugs. It happened that our wooden porch, with its dark and damp two-foot crawl space underneath, afforded the perfect environment for the slugs to live and breed. To combat the slugs and snails, I tried sprinkling ordinary table salt all over the porch floor each night, thinking the salt would dry out the slimy creatures and kill them. While the salt did kill the slugs when applied directly to them, it wasn't a good solution to the problem, since the salt also killed all nearby vegetation.

I went to the library and read about how to get rid of snails and slugs. Surprisingly, one of the strangest remedies worked the best. I tried the remedy that suggested to use beer to kill snails and slugs. Since we lived in a dry county, where alcohol sales were prohibited, I could not buy beer. Instead, I bought non-alcoholic beer, and it worked just as well. Follow these steps to kill snails and slugs with beer:

  1. Dig a hole deep enough to hold a canning jar or empty peanut butter jar.
  2. Place the jar inside of the hole until the rim is flush with the ground.
  3. Fill the jar with beer to about one-half inch from the top.
  4. Wait for the snails and slugs to go to the beer and fall down inside.

The snails and slugs won't be able to get out of the beer jar and will drown. If you don't want to use beer, use a solution of one-half teaspoon of baking yeast and one tablespoon of sugar in a jar of water. It's not the alcohol that attracts the snails and slugs; it's the yeast that baits them.

Author Bio

Doris Donnerman

Doris is a jack of all trades, writing on a variety of topics. Her articles have helped enlighten and entertain thousands over the years. ...

MORE FROM DORIS

Reducing Dampness in Your Home

If your home is particularly damp, you may wish to reduce the dampness for health reasons or for comfort. There are a variety ...

Discover More

Removing Tear Stains from Pet Fur

Have you ever noticed how the most beautiful light-furred animals have a tendency to get stains around their eyes? If you ...

Discover More

Organizing Your Closet Clutter

Do your closets seem to be a black hole, perpetually collecting items but never giving anything up? You can clean up the ...

Discover More

Cover Your Entire Back Yard! Flowtron's lantern-style insect killer uses nontoxic ultraviolet light to eliminate mosquitoes, biting flies, and other insects over a 1/2-acre area. Hang it up, plug it in, and you are ready to go. Cleaner, safer, and longer-lasting than messy chemicals. Check out Flowtron BK-15D Electronic Insect Killer today!

More Pest Tips

Natural Pest Control

If you are really hesitant about using chemicals to help take care of any pests you may have, then try a few other options. ...

Discover More

Getting Rid of Gnats

To control a gnat population naturally, allow your houseplants to dry out as much as possible and then apply sticky traps to ...

Discover More

What are Earwigs?

Earwigs use their tail forceps for opening narrow spaces so that they can gain entry, capturing prey such as small spiders, ...

Discover More
Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 8Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is three more than 5?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)