Snail Ale

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I thought we were going to get a bumper crop of broccoli this year – that is until half my seedlings were ravaged by wee little critters that crawl in the dark and moist.

Well, I couldn’t wait for the ducks for ferret out all the pests, so I turned to the very next best solution: Snail Ale.

The high sugar content of beer, lemonade, etc attracts the snails, slugs, and a variety of other insects (including wasps). Essentially they drown! No pesticides or nasty chemical pellets needed.

Its very easy, and there are two methods.

The simplest would be water and sugar (a lot of sugar) in a container and left out. Soft drink (lemonade, etc) would also work, but would be relatively expensive.

I find that this purpose is great for bad (infected) batches of home-brewed beer, or when relatives turn up for dinner bringing a 6-pack of Budweiser, VB, or any other horrid commercial beer.

A batch of Snail Ale Premium Braggot Mead

A batch of Snail Ale Premium Braggot Mead

You can buy little traps in Hardware/Gardening stores for such a purpose – but  find its best to recycle old ice-cream containers. The new ones have the little flip-top lid, which works great for keeping the rain out. I bury the containers in to ground level, making it as easy as possible for the critters to climb on in.

I believe the trick with making these work is in strategic placement. It has to be near enough to the susceptible vegies, but not so close that they decide to have a munch on your seedlings on the way to the honey-pot.

Oh, and a note – please do not feed the pickled slugs to your poultry. The last thing you need is drunk chooks!

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