Thursday, 25 May 2017

Slugs or What?

The weather's been very kind over the last few days with some fine warm weather. Monday is still our warmest day of the year although it's possible the weekend may be even warmer. Whilst Wednesday didn't produce our highest temperature it was our warmest day of the year based on average daily temperature which was 18.4°C (65.1°F) helped by an overnight low temperature of 14.9°C or 58.8°F.

On the allotment, all is not well.
Sowing & Germination Dates for Allotment Sown Vegetables
Above is a variation on the tables I use to keep track of sowing and planting dates for our flower and vegetable seeds. The problem is there are no germination dates. I expect carrot seeds to germinate in a couple of weeks and they were sown almost a month ago now. I know that parsnips are slow to germinate but they were sown a couple of days before the carrots. Each time we've visited the plot we've looked eagerly for any signs of germination but seen nothing.

We're now about to cut our losses and resow both carrots and parsnips. In the case of carrots we'll have to buy some more seed first. However, I'm not sure if the problem has been with the germination of the seeds or whether slugs have just eaten the germinating seedlings.

Our first sowing of broad beans and peas took about 2 weeks to germinate so may be there's still hope of them germinating.

In the garden at home and in the cold frames we've tried out "Slug Gone" wool pellets. So far I'd say they've been pretty successful at deterring slugs. Whilst they haven't completely removed the slug problem they have reduced it to more manageable proportions.
They are however rather expensive and so I decided to try to protect specimen plants and young plants growing in the cold frames. 
You probably won't have seen a picture of this garden hosta before, partly because by this time in the year it has been devastated by slugs leaving nothing more than a skeleton of stems. I thought it would be a fairly good test of the wool pellets and they seem to have done a good job.
In the cold frame I've discovered the occasional slug or snail and they've been disposed of. Very often in the cold frame we've lost an entire tray of seedlings overnight but so far this year that hasn't happened.


  1. Yes after the rain and now the heat the slugs are going mad. I put (expensive) organic approved pellets underneath trays and pots. Inspection today shows they needed renewing. And, horror of horror, I found two flatworms, one under the potato sack. Arggh!

    1. We are having a strange year for slugs. I thought we were keeping them under control. They usually do lots of damage to our early brassicas which have so far escaped any damage.
      The carrots, parsnips and peas are being eaten as they germinate. Is there any weather that slugs don't like?


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