Daily gardening tips: Use crushed eggshells to deter pests like slugs and add calcium to the soil

Gardening is a wonderful hobby that provides both physical and mental benefits

Daily gardening tips: Use crushed eggshells to deter pests like slugs and add calcium to the soil

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Gardening is a wonderful hobby that provides both physical and mental benefits. However, dealing with pests like slugs can sometimes be a challenge. Additionally, ensuring the soil has essential nutrients like calcium is crucial for the healthy growth of plants. In this article, we will explore a simple yet effective gardening tip that tackles both these issues - using crushed eggshells.

Why Are Slugs a Problem in the Garden?

Slugs are common garden pests that can cause significant damage to plants. These slimy creatures thrive in moist environments and feed on a variety of vegetables, flowers, and foliage. As they move through your garden, slugs leave behind a trail of mucus and chew irregular holes in leaves, causing aesthetic damage and compromising plant health.

How Do Crushed Eggshells Deter Slugs?

Eggshells provide an eco-friendly and cost-efficient method to keep slugs away from your precious plants. When slugs come into contact with sharp-edged crushed eggshells, it irritates their soft bodies, acting as a deterrent. The jagged texture of the shells makes it difficult for slugs to crawl across, effectively creating a barrier that prevents them from reaching your plants.

Steps to Utilize Crushed Eggshells as a Slug Deterrent:

  1. Save eggshells from your kitchen: Start by collecting and rinsing eggshells after use. Allow them to dry properly before crushing them. Make sure to handle them with care to avoid any unpleasant accidents.
  2. Crush the eggshells: Once dry, gently crush the eggshells into small pieces. You can use a mortar and pestle, blender, or even your hands to break them into granules. Ensure you achieve a jagged texture, as this will be most effective in deterring slugs.
  3. Create a barrier: Surround your vulnerable plants with a layer of crushed eggshells. Pay extra attention to plants that are typically targeted by slugs. The eggshells should create a perimeter that slugs find difficult to cross. Reapply the crushed eggshells after rainfall or as needed.

The Added Benefit: Calcium Enriched Soil

In addition to deterring slugs, crushed eggshells offer another advantage for your garden. Eggshells are primarily composed of calcium carbonate, a beneficial nutrient that helps promote plant growth and overall soil health. Acting as a slow-release fertilizer, eggshells break down over time, releasing calcium into the soil.

How to Utilize Crushed Eggshells for Soil Enrichment:

  1. Prepare the eggshells: Follow the first two steps mentioned above for deterring slugs. Make sure the eggshells are crushed into smaller pieces, similar to the size of coarse sand. This size allows for better absorption and decomposition.
  2. Add to the soil: Before adding the eggshells to the soil, ensure they are fully dry. Sprinkle the crushed eggshells around your plants' roots or mix them into the top layer of soil. For best results, apply the crushed eggshells during planting or as a top dressing during the growing season.
  3. Monitor and adjust: As with any soil amendment, it's essential to monitor the results. Observe your plants' response to the added calcium and adjust the quantity of crushed eggshells accordingly.

Other Tips and Considerations:

While using crushed eggshells as a slug deterrent and soil enricher is a valuable technique, there are some additional tips and considerations to keep in mind:

  • Regularly reapply the crushed eggshells after heavy rainfall or when they are no longer forming a visible barrier.
  • Remember that crushed eggshells may deter slugs, but other pests like snails may still be a concern.
  • Consider using other pest control methods in tandem with crushed eggshells, such as companion planting or organic slug repellents.
  • Do not use eggshells from eggs that have been cooked, as they lose their beneficial properties during the cooking process.
  • It's important to note that while crushed eggshells provide calcium, additional nutrient supplementation may still be necessary depending on your plants' needs.

In Conclusion

By utilizing crushed eggshells in your garden, you can deter pesky slugs while also enriching the soil with calcium. This simple, affordable, and eco-friendly approach not only protects your plants but also promotes their overall health and vigor. So start saving those eggshells, and watch your garden flourish!

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