It’s hard to believe at times how such small and slow creatures as snails and slugs can cause so much damage in such a short amount of time. In the morning we tend our garden, in the evening we discover the unmistakable trail of slime and large holes in the foliage of our favorite ornamental and useful plants. When gardeners first see these signs, their first reaction is usually to stop the offender from repeating his “crime.” They sprinkle toxic pellets or other pesticides, or use alternative greener repellents like coffee grounds or even stale beer. Despite the effectiveness of both methods, however, they only offer temporary results and must be used regularly. Wouldn’t it be nice if there was a method that provided protection throughout snail season? In order to take full advantage of these, we must first answer the question – What plants do snails dislike? Here you will find the answer to this and other related questions.
Snails and slugs can cause a lot of feeding damage
What plants don’t snails like?
There are numerous plant species and whole plant families that the annoying stomach feet don’t like. Some contain toxic substances or bitter substances, others exude an aroma that scares away the slow-moving pests. Some are also very difficult for the creatures to cross, creating an almost impenetrable barrier. Many combine several different repellents to protect their foliage from predators. You can take full advantage of these qualities.
However, since there are so many different types of plants to choose from, we recommend choosing the perfect ones based on the living conditions you can provide them with. Of course, these anti-slug plants only provide protection if they thrive. You can plant your favorites like a kind of hedge around ornamental and useful plants that the snails like to nibble on. They thus create a barrier that the snails do not like to cross and prefer to avoid. Now let’s answer the question “What plants don’t snails like”!
How effective are these anti-slug plants really?
People around the world love lavender for its intense, fresh and sweet aroma. But that is also the main reason why so many pests avoid this classic Mediterranean plant. Flies, mosquitoes, fleas, moths, ants, snails and slugs are all repelled by its scent. At the same time, the beautiful purple flowers attract pollinators such as bees, butterflies, lacewings and ladybugs.
Lavender has a compact, bushy habit and can be used well as a low hedge. It only requires sandy and well-drained soil and plenty of direct sunlight to thrive. If you do not want to plant lavender in your garden bed or cannot provide it with the best living conditions, you can also plant it in flower pots. Just place them in the areas of the garden you want to protect from pests.
Lavender smells like a summer holiday in Provence
A magnet for pollinators of all kinds
Almost all Mediterranean plants have the same care requirements
Similar to lavender, rosemary is another Mediterranean plant that humans and beneficial insects love for its aroma but pests hate. As an added plus, rosemary also has wide culinary uses and is therefore grown in many herb gardens. Its aromatic leaves are an excellent source of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds that improve the immune system, blood circulation, even memory and concentration.
Rosemary is a hardy, perennial medicinal herb and has exactly the same soil and sun requirements as lavender. It can also be used in a similar way to lavender – in a pot that you can put in the places you want to protect from various pests.
Rosemary is a must in every herb garden
This anti-slug plant is a popular and healthy medicinal herb
mint and catnip
Mint and catnip are another aromatic herb pair that will keep snails, slugs, but also flies, mosquitoes, aphids, moths and beetles away from your garden. Like lavender and rosemary, on the other hand, these plants attract pollinators as they begin to flower. Catnip will also attract the cute four-legged friends from which it gets its name.
Both mint and catnip can also be used in the kitchen. Its leaves and flowers can be used fresh or dried to make wonderfully refreshing teas, pestos, lemonades, etc. Almost the entire species of mint can grow very well in our climate. These plants can thrive in both sunny and shady locations, in nutrient-rich or relatively poor soil. However, mint must be cut regularly, otherwise it can become quite problematic.
Both of these plants grow very vigorously and need regular trimming
Often underestimated because of its name, catnip is just as edible as spearmint
Few plants are as hardy, robust, versatile and easy to care for as the rock cranesbill, often also called Balkan cranesbill or large-rooted cranesbill. It grows fast and compact, covering large areas of the garden in a few years. This cranesbill is therefore often used as a ground cover. If you want to use it as a bed edging, the secateurs will often have to be used.
This geranium species has large, highly aromatic and slightly hairy leaves – a combination of qualities that snails and slugs don’t like. Its small, purple flowers are filled with nectar, making it a valuable forage plant for bees. The rock cranesbill prefers partially shaded areas and dry, well-drained and fertile soil. It also grows excellently in flower boxes if you can’t provide its preferred living conditions.
This cranesbill impresses with an impressive abundance of flowers
The small but numerous flowers can be white or purple
Snapdragons are well known for their ability to resist most pests and even many common diseases. Their small and slightly hairy leaves make them quite unattractive to snails. On the other hand, its racemose flowers in a wide range of colors and its long stems make it a real eye-catcher in the garden. It’s difficult to resist the urge to squeeze the sides of the buds and make them open like a real lion’s jaws.
Their only but significant disadvantage is that most snapdragons are not hardy and therefore must be grown as annuals. The only exception is the snapdragon, which can withstand temperatures down to -7 degrees. A thick layer of mulch can additionally help it survive the winter and reappear next year.
The long stems make the snapdragon the perfect cut flower
These ornamental plants often suffer from waterlogging and root rot, so water only moderately
Woolly Ziest is one of the cutest little plants you can have in your garden and we all love petting its fluffy, woolly leaves. However, snails and slugs hate this unusual ornamental plant for the same reason we love it. The tiny hairs prick and cut the snail’s foot, i.e. the gastropods avoid the woolly goat at all costs.
Woll-Ziest can be used quite well as a ground cover and requires only little care. All it needs is a sunny spot and well-drained, dry soil. The Woolly Ziest adds a lot of visual interest to any colorful garden with its grey-green leaves and stems.
The woolly goat turns your garden into a real petting zoo
The grey-green leaves immediately catch the eye
What plants don’t snails like? We have now partly found the answer to this question. The garden plants featured here are just a handful of the most effective anti-slug plants that provide almost instant results. Choose your favorites and say goodbye to the bugs!