Updated: October 5, 2022

Slugs are a common problem faced by gardeners and plant enthusiasts all over the world. They can cause significant damage to plants and flowers, leaving unsightly holes and wilting leaves. If left unchecked, they can even kill plants. Fortunately, there are several ways to get rid of slugs and keep your plants healthy and thriving.

Identify the Presence of Slugs

Before you start taking action, you need to know whether your plants are infested with slugs or not. Slugs are usually active at night or in damp conditions. You can check for their presence by looking for slimy trails on the soil or leaves of your plants. You may also find them hiding under pots or in other moist areas.

Natural Ways to Get Rid of Slugs

If you prefer natural methods, there are several ways to get rid of slugs without harming the environment or your plants. Some effective methods include:

Beer Traps

Slugs are attracted to beer, so you can create a trap by burying a shallow dish or jar in the soil and filling it with beer. The slugs will be attracted to the beer and will fall into the trap, where they will drown.

Copper Tape

Copper tape can be placed around the base of your pots or raised beds. The copper creates an electrical charge that repels slugs, preventing them from climbing up onto your plants.


Crushed eggshells can be sprinkled around the base of plants. The sharp edges of the shells will deter slugs from crawling over them.

Coffee Grounds

Coffee grounds can be sprinkled around the base of plants to create a barrier that slugs will not cross. Additionally, the caffeine in coffee is toxic to slugs, so it can help deter them from your garden.

Chemical Methods to Get Rid of Slugs

If natural methods are not effective, chemical methods can be used. However, it is important to use them with care and follow the instructions on the label. Some common chemical methods include:

Slug Pellets

Slug pellets can be sprinkled around plants. They contain a poison that kills slugs when they eat them.

Slug Bait

Slug bait can also be used to attract and kill slugs.

Slug Spray

Slug spray can be used to directly target slugs on your plants. It contains a chemical that paralyzes and kills slugs.

Prevention is Key

Prevention is always better than cure when it comes to keeping slugs away from your plants. Some effective prevention methods include:

  • Keep your garden clean and free of debris
  • Remove any hiding places for slugs, such as piles of leaves or wood
  • Water your plants in the morning so that the soil has time to dry out during the day
  • Use raised beds or containers to keep plants out of reach of slugs
  • Plant slug-resistant varieties of plants

By taking these preventative measures, you can reduce the chances of slugs infesting your garden and damaging your plants.


Are slugs harmful to humans?
While slugs are not harmful to humans, they can carry parasites that can cause illness if ingested. It is important to wash your hands after handling slugs or soil where they have been present.

Can I use salt to kill slugs?
While salt can be effective in killing slugs, it is not recommended as it can harm plants and other wildlife in your garden.

How often should I check for slug infestations?
It is recommended to check for slug infestations regularly, especially during damp or humid weather conditions.