pesticides

Here is what I bought so far and please tell me if this stuff is bad. I am on Long Island in NY and we have a slug and snail problem and I think we had other insects last year but I don't remember which.
Sluggo and those productsd are not available here.
Maxide Slug & Snail Killer- Wife bought that for flowers
Ortho Bug-GETA - I bought that for the slugs and snails\
Garden Safe: (brand Name) Fruit and Vegetable Spray- at Home Depot
Bonide Garden Dust (Copper Sulphate 7%) Home Depot
Rotnone
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Alan wrote:

I've been gardening for years and have yet to need any chemical means to control snails or slugs (or any insect). There are tons of non-toxic alternatives. Mulch, rough lumber, copper barriers, landscape fabric, beer traps, DE...the list goes on. Most of these alternatives (mulch, lumber, copper) require little maintenance whereas your snail killers have to be continuously reapplied.
(And I'm not a anti-chemical freak-a-zoid. I use fungicide on my tomatoes and potatoes and will use a selective herbicide for some weeds in the lawn...but if a non-toxic alternative exists and is effective, I'll certainly use it.)
..
Zone 5a in Canada's Far East.
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Cloud,
Thanks for the reply. First, what is DE? Is that, and forgive my spelling, diatomaceous earth? If it is, we use that for the pool filterafter backwashing. We get a 24 pound bag for $5 from Island Recreational.
The snails and the slugs were so bad last year. We are putting down mulch now and I also got 2 two cubic ft bags of cedar chips. I did beer once and that is one disgusting mess.
What does the Bug-GETA do to the soil? All year round I eat vegetables fro the supermarkets and god knows what's on that. I appreciate that you try to stay chemical free but I'm try to just use those that aren't super hamful.
Last year in addition to the slugs and snails we had these flee looking things that ate leaves. We planted 4 zuchini plants and each one yielded nothing, even though we could see the beginnings of very nice zuchinis and last year we had mulch but it obviously wasn't enough or it just didn't stop whatever was eating the zuchinis
My wife put down some stuff, which is at least 100 ft from the garden, to keep rabits and squirrels away from all the annuals she puts out around the pool, basically where the pool cover goes so you really cannot put perenials there. I was thinking of using that poweer around the outside of the vegetable garden but that one might be really bad.
Of all the things I listed, there aren't any that are moderately safe?
On Tue, 30 May 2006 14:07:04 -0230, cloud dreamer

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Alan wrote:

Yup, that's it. A nice solid border of that will deter the snails. The rough, sharp edges tear up their bellies. The only downside is that it needs to be reapplied after heavy rain or waterings. If you live in a dry area, it's a great deterrent.

The chips won't be as affective as the mulch. The snails will simply make houses out of them and crawl under them. It's the "splintered" nature of the mulch that deters them.

I don't know the product but given the price you can get DE for, you're just as well off with that. DE is also not toxic to wildlife whereas some of the chemical deterrents can be. The label should tell you everything you need to know.

Could be aphids. The mulch won't stop them. You might try insecticidal soap.

The only way to stop rabbits around here is chicken wire. As for the slugs and friends, you can consider making a border from rough lumber (so rough you'd get splinters handling it without gloves). The buggers won't crawl over them. I make all my raised beds from rough lumber (dug down an inch into the ground) and have a zero slug problem.
There's also copper. You can use copper flashing or a copper mesh (available from leevalley.com for about $30 for 100 feet). The slugs won't crawl over it cause it gives them a shocking sensation. It has to be cleaned periodically with vinegar to keep it from tarnishing.
Beer traps are messy but are good if you have an enclosed area that may have caught some slugs inside....like my raised bed. For the few days after I construct them, I set out traps to get the ones that think they're in for a buffet in the bed.
Like I mentioned, mulch. Just ensure it's real mulch and not chips. You need to mess it up from time to time (couple times a year) to ensure the mulch on bottom hasn't rotted to the point that the whole area becomes a tunnel for the buggers.
I also use landscape fabric (usually under the mulch. The slugs don't seem to be able to cross a long area of the fabric (it's usual 3 or 4 foot width) without drying out.
And the DE. All these are completely safe and non-toxic. Also ensure you have no hiding areas around, like boards and rocks laying on top of the ground. The buggers love any spot that is cool and moist.
..
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Here, in the Pacific NW, where the slugs are legendary...I've had good luck with simply hand-picking. Go out on a wet spring morning and hand pick all the slugs you can see. Pull back long grass and leaves where they may be hiding. Put into a plastic bag. Knot when done, put in the freezer for a humane death, and the next day drop into the trash. It doesn't take any longer than spreading slug bait. I used to have a terrible slug infestation when I first moved here; now there's hardly any.
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Warm Regards,

Claire Petersky
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On Wed, 31 May 2006 02:56:42 GMT, "Claire Petersky"

I put a board in the garden for the slugs to gather under, then I can simply flip it and squish the little buggers.
In the spring when the red bellied wood pecker is still coming to the bird feeders, I put the board on the table with the feeding tray, and get to watch him and some of the other birds peek under the board and gobble the slugs.
Penelope
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"Maybe you'd like to ask the Wizard for a heart."
"ElissaAnn" < snipped-for-privacy@everybodycansing.com>
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Alan, I'm a great believer in Bug-Geta. I use it every year. It does the trick, is really easy and quick. But, I'm not into organic. I had a problem with white flies on my zucchini and way over sprayed (and at the wrong time of day) some Bug-B-Gon. It was so old that the directions were no longer legible. Anyway, the next morning it was apparent that I'd screwed up as I'd fried a lot of the leaves. So, now I have something called Admire which is a systemic. That kinda bothers me more than the exterior stuff. Admire isn't available to the home gardener as far as I know. I got it from a fellow who does commercial application. I live in the San Joaquin Valley (Merced County, CA) and know lots of farmers. Sue

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