Pest Control

How to Get Rid of Snails in Potted Plants

How to Get Rid of Snails in Potted Plants

Do you have issues with snails destroying your garden or potted plants?

Well, you’re not alone. They may look harmless at first glance, but they can devour your favorite plants little by little.

There are plenty of reasons why you should get rid of snails. These include:

Reasons Why You Should Get Rid of Snails


Some people find snails as an eyesore. That is because of their slime trail and mucus-covered body. So, if this is what you view them, keep them out of your garden.

Host Parasites

A gang of snails can host some deadly microorganisms and parasites. Some of them can carry liver flukes, while others can carry parasitic worms.

Damage Plants

Snails feed mainly on leaves, making them a real threat not just to your potted plants, but to your entire garden. They can destroy your potted plants by eating up the tender, soft leaves. They prefer the newly sprouted leaflets and have a non-stop appetite.

The good news is that there are several ways on how you can get rid of snails in potted plants, and these include:

Some Ways to Get Rid of Snails in Potted Plants

Using Salt or Vinegar

Vinegar to get rid of snail

Salt and vinegar are not ordinary condiments. You can use them in various home remedies, but they are also effective when it comes to getting rid of snails.

Make sure to spread salt around the parameter of your potted plants. Use it on the rim of the container to ensure that the snails will not cross it to get to the pots. Reapply it after wind or rain.

Vinegar is known to kill snails because of its high acidity level. If you prefer using it, then make a vinegar spray. You need to spray it directly on the snails. Since the vinegar comes with a little residual effect, you need to reapply it several times.

Planting Hostas, Seaweed, and Aromatic Herbs

Not all Hostas can resist snails, so make sure to choose the one that’s not friendly to these organisms. The one with thicker leaves is known to be the most effective in resisting these gastropods.

Being a salty plant, seaweed is also effective in eliminating snails in your potted plants. You can include it in your garden pond and give an unappealing habitat to snails. Additionally, aromatic herbs are other useful repellent plants. You can choose from sage, rosemary, and lavender.

Employing Predators

Another natural way to get rid of snails is by using their predators. You can introduce ducks, geese, and chickens in your garden to feed on them. Besides, you can also use frogs, turtles, nematodes, salamanders, and birds.

Placing Copper Rings

Placing Copper Rings

The sensitivity of snails to copper will help you easily eliminate them in your flower pots. This homemade snail killer is lethal to them and is available at most hardware stores.

Make sure to place the copper rings around the perimeter of the potted plants. There should be a barrier to copper. By doing so, snails crawling across the planter will surely touch the copper.

Using Homemade Traps

Overturned flowerpots, inverted grapefruit leaves, and boards are useful traps in controlling snails in your garden.

When flowerpots are tilted, it’s a lot easier for the snails to move into them. Just leave the overturned pots overnight in the infested area.

Due to the attractive scent of grapefruit, it can easily trap snails. They will get trapped and die after crawling under the halves.

As for the board, setting the wooden plank on the ground is an effective trap. After their activities at night, the snails will end up hiding under it. During the daytime, just lift the board and kill them. In case you do not have a board, you can make use of a carpet or a black plastic sheet.

Using Liquid Bait

Even just for a day, you can sacrifice your favorite beer to get rid of snails. Beer is one of the most effective liquid baits.

All you need to do is to fill a wide-mouthed jar or a bowl halfway with beer. Make sure to place it in the infested area to collect the snails completely. To make this method more effective, you can bury the container a bit in the ground. Once they came out of their hiding place, they will move in and get drown. After that, dispose of the dead snails.

Alternatively, you can use iron phosphate. If not, a mixture of honey and sugar or grape juice is another great option.


One of the most fulfilling things that you can experience in gardening is seeing your plants bloom. The luscious green leaves and deep-colored flowers can bring an extraordinary feeling.

However, leaving your decorative plants leafless and flowerless is a total nightmare on your part after a gang of snails feed on them for a week or two. Seeing a group of snails sleeping contently in your pots is a devastating scene. So, do not think twice about getting rid of them.

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