Snails are not just a nuisance in the garden, they can also be dangerous to your health. Snails carry a number of diseases and parasites that they spread through their slime and feces. The most common snail disease is rat lungworm (Angiostrongylus cantonensis), which causes meningitis in humans if ingested.
Snails are attracted to gardens because they love to eat plants, especially those with soft leaves like lettuce and cabbage. They can also damage your plants by eating their roots.
The best way to get rid of snails is by using a good snail killer that uses quality chemicals, natural ingredients, or repellents. Are you looking for the best snail killer for your garden? Then you’ve come to the right place.
But Before We Begin, What Are Snails?
Snails are a type of mollusk.
Snails are a type of mollusk, meaning they have soft bodies, shells, and both male and female reproductive organs. Although snails are primarily herbivores, some species will eat small insects and even other snails.
Reproduction for snails can happen in different ways and can vary greatly from species to species. Some snails reproduce sexually, while others reproduce asexually by cloning themselves (budding). These two methods create different types of offspring – snails that come from sexual reproduction will be genetically different from their parents, while clones are genetically identical to each other.
Snails can be found throughout the world in almost every type of habitat from desert dunes to rainforests. They tend to prefer humid areas with plenty of moisture. They also prefer plants with high nitrogen levels because it is easier for them to digest these plants more quickly than low nitrogen levels, which take longer and require more work on behalf of the snail.
There are many different kinds of snails in the United States. Some of these are native to North America and some were introduced from other parts of the world. Most types feed on plants, but some eat other animals or even dead organisms.
There are many different types of snails you could contend with in your garden, including:
Garden snails (Cornu aspersum). These snails are also known as common brown garden snails or Roman snails. They can be found throughout much of North America and Europe.
Cepaea hortensis (Great gray garden snail). This species is native to Europe but has been introduced to North America as well. It’s also known as an elephant trunk snail because it has a long, curved shell that looks like an elephant’s trunk when viewed from above.
Helix nemoralis (Leopard slug). This snail is native to Europe but was introduced to North America during the 19th century where it now lives on both continents. It grows up to 4 inches long but is normally 1-1½ inches long when mature.
While most people don’t think of the slow-moving snail as something to be concerned about when it comes to health or safety, the truth is that snails can actually put your health and the health of your pets at risk. As we mentioned briefly above, snails can carry parasites and other harmful microorganisms that can be hazardous to people or animals. Luckily, illnesses caused by snails are rare, and the most likely victims of snail infestations are going to be your plants.
Snails are a common garden pest that can damage plants, flowers, and vegetables. They feed on the leaves of plants and can chew holes in them, which can lead to the death of the plant.
They also leave behind slime trails as they move across your lawn or garden. These trails can make it difficult for water to penetrate the soil, so you may notice that your plants appear to be dry even when there is ample rain.
Other snail damage can be difficult to identify because you need to know what a healthy plant looks like in order to recognize any issues. But here are some signs that your plants may have been damaged by snails:
- The leaves are brown or yellowed with white marks on them
- You have found empty snail shells on top of your soil
- There are slime trails on leaves and stems
- Seeing the actual snails themselves
Snails do play an important role in a healthy ecosystem, and while many people may enjoy having snails in their garden, if you have too many they can cause a real problem. So, why might an abundance of snails be attracted to your garden?
Let’s find out.
Why Are Snails Attracted To My Garden?
These pests are attracted to moist environments with an abundance of food.
Snails are a common problem for gardeners, especially in humid environments. Snails can eat your plants and destroy your garden, so it’s important to know how to get rid of snails using a good snail killer. But even if you do get rid of snails, if you don’t address the root of the problem, the snails will continue to come back.
So, why are snails attracted to your garden?
Snails thrive in moist conditions, which is why they love hanging out in gardens where there’s plenty of foliage and water available. They also like hiding under rocks and logs because these areas offer shade from the sun and protection from predators such as birds and other animals.
While they feed on both plants and animals, they prefer plants because they provide more nutrients than meat.
Some of a snail’s favorite meals might include:
- Vegetables from vegetable gardens
- Dead animal matter
- Organic matter
- And even other snails!
Basically, anything and everything in your garden could be fair game to a hungry snail, which can make getting rid of them by planting vegetation snails may be deterred by a bit tricky. There’s also the matter of how these pests got into your garden in the first place.
Where did these slow-moving organisms even come from?
Snails can enter your garden in several different ways. They may have come from neighboring gardens where snails already exist and travel through the soil to other areas.
Or, they could have been brought into the area by pets or birds that carried them on their feet or beaks from around the house or yard into the garden.
Snails can also be transferred on tools or shoes that have been used in other gardens or yards without being cleaned first.
Snails usually stay close to their food source, which means they tend to stay around gardens and other outdoor areas where there is plenty of vegetation for them to eat. They can also be found in damp places such as under rocks or logs, or in hidden crevices in cracks in walls and foundations.
Though many people don’t realize it, snail infestations in gardens are quite common throughout the United States, especially during spring when the temperature rises and conditions are ideal. During this time snails will emerge from their hiding places and start looking for food.
If you’ve noticed an uptick in snail activity around your garden, it’s time to begin looking into the best snail killer.
What Is A Snail Killer And How Does It Work?
Snail killer can come in many different forms.
A snail killer is a chemical, insecticide, granule, spray, or natural ingredient that is designed to kill snails. The most common type of snail killer is metaldehyde, but there are other types of snail killer products available as well.
These could include organic snail killers made with plant-based ingredients like essential oils, salts, or other products that will kill snails while being safe for people, pets, and the environment.
As we mentioned, snail killers come in a variety of forms. Some are made to kill only snails, while others are designed to kill snails, slugs, and other pests. The most common types of snail killer include:
Granular snail killer: Also known as snail bait, these products contain a substance that is toxic for snails. When a snail eats the granules, it dies.
Pelleted snail killer: These products work similarly to granular snail killer and contain pellets that are toxic for snails. When a snail ingests the pellets, it dies.
Liquid snail killer: Liquid snail killer products often come in the form of sprays, and they include a liquid solution that is toxic for snails, sometimes killing the snail on contact. Other types of sprays are made to be sprayed on plants so that when the snail eats the plant, it is poisoned and dies.
Snail killers are generally safe for people and pets. They are usually made from natural ingredients, such as lime or copper sulfate. If you do have any concerns about using snail killers on your property, it’s best to take your time and do your research on the product you’re considering. This is especially true if you have children or pets living in the home who often spend time in the yard or garden where you will be using the product.
What To Look For In The Best Snail Killer
When looking for a snail killer, look for quality ingredients.
There are many different snail killer products available, but not all of them are effective. If you want to get rid of snails in your garden, it’s important to make sure you choose a product that will actually work.
Look for a snail killer that will be effective and long-lasting. You want to make sure the product is going to kill all of the snails in your garden, not just some of them.
It’s also important to look for snail killer with quality ingredients. Many commercial snail killers contain chemicals and pesticides that could be harmful to your pets or children if not used carefully. Be sure to check out what ingredients are in the product before purchasing it so you know what kind of effect it will have on your garden and the risks it could pose to your family members.
Last, be sure to avoid snail killer products that may be toxic to plants or garden vegetables. Some commercial snail killers contain chemicals that can be absorbed by plants or vegetables, causing them to die prematurely or become deformed before they’re harvested from the ground.
We know that looking for the best snail killer for your garden can be tricky, so we’ve listed some of our top picks for you to consider below.
Garden Safe Snail And Slug Bait
Garden Safe Snail And Slug Bait is a product that you can use to control snails and slugs in your garden. It is an organic, natural product that will kill pests without harming your plants, pets, or children.
The best thing about this product is that it’s so easy to use. Simply sprinkle it on the ground around your plants and in the soil. The snails and slugs will eat it, then die within 48 hours.
Garden Safe Snail And Slug Bait contain iron phosphate which is an effective nerve toxin that kills pests within 48 hours (depending on temperature). Iron phosphate has been used for decades to control pest species because of its effectiveness and safety profile.
EcoVenger Garden Insect Control
EcoVenger is another natural, non-toxic insecticide and snail killer product that works by attacking the nervous system of pests with a powerful active ingredient, spinosad.
Spinosad is derived from naturally occurring soil bacteria and has been used in agriculture since 1996. It is considered safe for humans, animals, and the environment.
Unlike many conventional pesticides, Spinosad is not an insecticide or fungicide; it works as a neurotoxin against targeted insects, making it an effective snail killer that is safe for families and gardens.
Monterey Sluggo Snail Killer
Monterey Sluggo Snail Killer is made with iron phosphate, a naturally occurring mineral that’s safe for people, pets, and the environment. Iron phosphate kills snails by releasing free iron into their digestive system, which causes death within 24 hours. Iron phosphate is not harmful to plants or animals other than snails.
You can use Monterey Sluggo Snail Killer around your home or garden to get rid of snails and a variety of other pests. S
Bonide Garden Naturals Bug and Snail Killer
Bonide Garden Naturals Bug and Snail Killer is a non-toxic way to kill slugs and snails in the garden. It works again by using iron phosphate as the active ingredient, making it an effective natural snail killer.
Because the product is made from all-natural ingredients that are safe for pets and children, it will also not harm other beneficial insects such as bees, wasps, butterflies, and ladybugs.
The product comes in a ready-to-use spray bottle so you don’t have to mix it yourself or worry about measuring it out properly before you apply it to your plants.
Natria Snail and Slug Killer
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Natria Snail and Slug Killer is a natural snail killer. It targets snails, slugs, and their eggs in your garden. It’s not only effective but also safe to use around pets and children.
This is a non-toxic snail killer that works upon being ingested by snails. The pellets are made from saltpetre which has been used for centuries as a natural pesticide for killing flies, fleas, moths, cockroaches, and other pests.
The salts in this product are natural minerals that are extracted from soil or rocks in Australia (where it’s made). When saltpetre comes into contact with water it turns into potassium nitrate which is highly toxic to snails when ingested through their mouths or through their skin when they crawl over it.
Corry’s Slug and Snail Killer
Corry’s Slug and Snail Killer is another organic snail killer that contains iron phosphate. Iron phosphate is the active ingredient in many snail killers, including some popular brands such as Sluggo Plus and Ortho Home Defense Garden Granules listed above.
Iron phosphate works by disrupting snails’ nervous systems. The slug or snail will ingest the iron phosphate, which then causes damage to their bodies. This causes them to stop eating and eventually die.
The main advantage of Corry’s Slug and Snail Killer is that it is a natural product. It does not contain any chemicals or toxins, so it will not harm your pets or children if they come into contact with it. This makes it safer than many other brands of snail killer on the market today.
Another advantage of this product is that it can be used safely around plants and flowers because it won’t harm them either! You can use Corry’s Slug and Snail Killer anywhere in your garden without worrying about harming your plants, flowers, or vegetables from vegetable gardens.
Safer Brand Slug and Snail Killer
Snail killer is a product that kills snails and slugs. Snail killer is used to manage snails and slugs in the garden and on plants.
Safer Brand Slug and Snail Killer is a concentrated granular product for use on landscape plants, ornamentals, vegetables, fruit trees, greenhouse crops, and interiorscapes. It contains iron phosphate as the active ingredient which is lethal to snails, slugs, and their eggs. Iron phosphate also works by disrupting the calcium metabolism of snails and slugs, causing them to die.
Iron phosphate has a low mammalian toxicity rating, as we’ve mentioned. The active ingredient in this product does not readily leach into groundwater or surface water systems, so it is also safer for the environment.
Other Products You Can Use To Protect Your Garden From Snails
Snail repellents can also be an effective way to protect your garden from snails.
Along with using a quality snail killer to get rid of a current snail problem, it’s also wise to use products that will keep future snails from coming back around.
The best products include ingredients that can be used as snail repellents, like those products we have listed below.
Kraftex Store Copper Tape
Kraftex Store Copper Tape is a patented, biodegradable, water-based product that repels slugs and snails. The product creates an invisible barrier that deters these pests from crossing the treated areas.
Kraftex Store Copper Tape is completely safe for humans, pets, and plants. It is also non-toxic to earthworms and other beneficial insects. The product does not wash away in rain or watering, making it ideal for use on plants and gardens that need protection from snails and slugs.
The Kraftex Store Copper Tape can be used as a barrier around your garden or house to help keep pests out of your home. It can also be used to protect young seedlings from damage because it will keep slugs away from them until they are strong enough to withstand these hungry pests.
Mighty Mint Plant Protection
Mighty Mint Plant Protection is a highly concentrated, and natural product designed to repel snails, slugs, and other pests from your plants.
The active ingredient in Mighty Mint Plant Protection is peppermint oil. Snails and slugs are not fans of peppermint, which is why it works so well at keeping them away from your plants. We also like that this product is safe for children and pets!
Mighty Mint Plant Protection is not only effective and safe for people and animals, but it is also safe for your plants and the environment.
Exterminators Choice Slug and Snail Spray
Exterminators Choice Slug and Snail Spray is a unique, non-toxic formula that repels snails and slugs. This product contains iron phosphate, which is the active ingredient in many slug baits. It works by creating an unpleasant taste and smell in your garden that snails and slugs will recognize. They will avoid eating any plants sprayed with this product as well as any other plants they come into contact with while they are feeding.
This product comes in a convenient aerosol can with a nozzle that allows you to spray directly onto plants without getting it on yourself or getting too much on each area at once. This makes it easy to apply evenly over the entire surface of your garden beds or flower beds.
Home Remedies – How To Make Your Own Snail Killer
Snails are sensitive and there are many home remedies you can use to deter them.
If you have a snail infestation in your garden, then there are some simple home remedies that you can use to repel or kill them in a pinch.
Crushed Up Eggshells
Egg shells are an effective way to kill snails because of their sharp edges that cut through the snails’ soft bodies. You can crush the egg shells into tiny pieces and place them around your garden or driveway where you see snails present.
Sandpaper is another home remedy for killing snails because it has rough edges that can cut through soft snail bodies easily. You can place pieces of sandpaper around your garden or driveway where you see snails present. More often than not, snails will avoid crawling over the sandpaper, even if there is a juicy plant on the other side.
Lava rocks are another great way to kill off snails in your garden because they contain iron oxide which is toxic for these creatures. This method may not work well if there are too many slugs and snails though so keep checking on your plants regularly so that you can determine if using lava rocks is working.
Snails hate coffee grounds and will avoid them at all costs. Sprinkle them around your plants and watch as the snails disappear. If you decide to use this method, remember not to use instant coffee as it contains additives that can kill your plants.
Seaweed contains copper sulfate and potassium salts, both of which are toxic to snails. You can simply spread some seaweed around your plants to kill any snails that come into contact with it.
Essential oils can be used both indoors and outdoors as a pest repellent, and it works great to keep snails at bay too. You can make a homemade spray by adding ten drops of essential oil like peppermint oil or tea tree oil to two cups of water in a spray bottle. Add more drops if you want a stronger concentration. Then Spray this solution around your plants and garden to deter the pests.
How To Make Your Own Beer Trap Snail Killer
This is one of the easiest ways to get rid of snails and slugs in your garden. It is also one of the cheapest methods as well since all you need is beer! You just need to pour a bit of beer into a jar or bowl and place it in your garden where you think they may be hiding out. The smell will attract them and they will go inside the jar where they will drown in the beer!
Keeping Snails Under Control – Experts Weigh In
You can use a variety of tips and tricks to keep snails under control.
Snails and slugs are the bane of gardeners everywhere. They eat your plants, they leave trails of slime on your patio, and they can even carry disease. But what can you do about them along with using the best snail killer above?
You may also want to try companion planting — this means planting certain plants together in order to deter snails. For example, some herbaceous perennials work well with chives or garlic planted around their base. Try planting garlic cloves in pots at various points around your yard as well; not only will it keep slugs away but it will also help deter bugs like ants!
Other plants you might try planting in your garden to deter snails include:
- Lamb’s Ears
- And Peppermint
Another great way to repel snails after you have used the best snail killer is to invite The Snail Predators.
Birds, ducks, and chickens are all-natural predators of snails. They will eat any that they find on your property and help keep the population down.
Other tips you can use to help keep snails away include:
- Using Gravel or Wood Chips As A Barrier Around Plants
- Avoiding Planting Marigolds (Snails and Slugs are Attracted to These Flowers!)
- And Avoid Watering Your Plants In The Evening
And remember, while snails can be frustrating, one or two in your garden could do your vegetation well. However, a plethora of snails can be incredibly damaging. Luckily, by following the tips and using the best snail killer products listed above, you should be able to keep your garden safe from snails and other pests well into the next season.
Thanks for reading!
Jack founded our blog after two decades of working in the pest control industry. His vast experience dealing with a wide array of pests allows him to diagnose issues quickly and get to the heart of pest problems quickly and effectively. He has serviced more than 2,000 homes over his career and there is hardly any pest situation that he has not seen before.