Thursday, July 4, 2013

In praise of slugs!

Now its not often that I would suggest that slugs have done a great job when they've decimated a bed of plants. I personally don't tolerate them in my garden and have ways of making them feel very unwelcome! We all know that slugs do seem to have a gourmet attraction to certain plants and Hostas probably immediately come to mind for most of you. When I used to run my small nursery, it was Cannas that used to be the target then and we had to be very careful to avoid the stock being damaged as the new shoots appeared. With cannas, the leaves are rolled and so slug damage shows as a row of little holes as the leaf unfurls - rather like a child's paper folding and cutting games.

Slugs making patterns in canna leaves - clever little things!
Anyway near to where I live, there is a mower dealership with a boundary of big plant boxes. These have featured in my blog in the past being sure-fire winners of the most garish bedding displays in town. Just a couple of weeks ago, they were planted up for the summer with a carefully crafted mix of salmon pink pelargoniums, red begonias and orange and yellow French marigolds - new levels of floral headache! But just days after planting at least the bright orange and yellow has been almost eliminated - the slugs have eaten the marigolds and amazingly left the pelargoniums and begonia untouched. I wouldn't have expected slugs to be quite so discerning! Just the marigold foliage - nothing else - well done!

Last year in all its technicolour horror!

The slugs have done their work -

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