Gardeners across the UK should prepare themselves for an onslaught of slugs following the warm and wet weather of the past few months, according to experts at online retailer Green Gardener (www.greengardener.co.uk).
The 2019/20 winter saw just 18.8 days of frost, the third fewest since records began and was the fifth wettest, leading to predictions are that it’s going to be a bumper season for the garden pests.
“Slugs need water to breed, so the warm autumn followed by a warm, wet winter means large numbers of slugs and slug eggs that have overwintered ready to attack young tasty fresh growth in the spring,” warns Jon Manners from Green Gardener. “Not only will there be more of them, they’ll be active earlier too.”
But while slugs can be the bane of a gardener’s life, all is not lost as Jon says gardeners can protect their plants in an environmentally friendly way using Nemaslug Slug Killer from early spring. Nemaslug contains millions of naturally occurring microscopic nematodes, which control slugs and unlike chemical controls are one hundred per cent organic.
Nemaslug is one of a number of naturally occurring nematode products supplied by Green Gardener designed to control garden pests from vine weevil to leatherjackets. Sent to you in powder form they all work in a similar way. Simply mixed with water and applied to the soil surface, the nematodes are released to attack the pest. Once inside, they release a bacterium, which kills the pest causing it to pass away under the soil leaving your precious plants unharmed.
Having supplied Nemaslug for many years to keen gardeners up and down the country, Jon has heard first-hand the results it delivers and has also dealt with plenty of queries. Here are the most common questions he hears:
- Will it cause any harm to anything else in my garden?
- Nemaslug kills slugs and nothing else. If your dog was to pick up the pack from the doormat after the post man has delivered it and eat it (yes it has happened!) the dog would be unaffected, although you would be pretty irritated! The same applies to all pets, children, hedgehogs etc. Not only that, if you apply to edible crops such as lettuce you can pick and eat straightaway and it is perfect for organic crops.
- How is it applied?
- Simply mix the powder with water in a watering can and then water onto the soil around plants using a coarse rose. For larger areas use a hose-end feeder or a specific nematode applicator. For best results apply when the soil is moist and the soil temperature is over 5C. Smaller packs treat 40sqm/50sqyds and larger packs 100sqm/ 125sqyds
- How long does the treatment last?
- The nematodes are active for about 6 weeks and then then their numbers need topping up. The easiest way to do this is to order a planned programme with deliveries arriving every 6 weeks. This should be easier for you and saves money too.
- Can I store the product?
This is a living product supplied in a sealed tray that needs to be refrigerated -this is why you tend not to find it in garden centres. Simply pop it in the fridge (it is totally harmless to your cheese and salads etc.) and use by the expiry date printed on the pack sleeve. This will be at least 14 days after delivery, but normally longer. It is delivered by 1st class post and the pack will fit though your letter box.
- What about the sneaky small slugs that live underground?
- Nemaslug kills all slugs above and below ground of any colour up to 10cms in size.
- Does it work?
Well customers come back year after year and as one enthusiast customer says “No slugs-just lettuce!”
For further information on Nemaslug and more gardening advice, visit www.greengardener.co.uk