February 2014

Voles and slugs on the run

by I.K.

Although I've never really believed in it, I've been treating my plants for a few years with homeopathic remedies.
I never had much success with voles and slugs in my garden because they both thrive so well there among my plants. An apple tree, a lovely rose more than sixty years old, a kiwi, countless lettuce, chard, beans, lovage bushes, and numerous vegetables have all fallen prey to the rodents and slugs.  
Finally, I resorted to poison although I was sorry for the animals and I felt distaste for the plants because of all the poison in the soil. Then, last year, while looking for alternatives, I heard of Arvicolinae (rodents) and Helix tosta in one of your bulletins. I ordered the remedies but to start with, there was little effect.

                       vole           apple tree           slug

This year, I poured some Arvicolinae D6 undiluted, just a few milliliters, into each of their burrows. They disappeared!!!! Every four weeks, I pour a few drops into the places where their burrows were. They've truly gone. I can't quite believe it but a fact is a fact. Even my doubting neighbour took a few ml to try himself. They've disappeared from his place too. I've found that the remedy does not work when diluted but I don't care. I'll keep on using it pure for the time being and hope that the sweet little things will carry on their painstaking work in somebody else's garden.
This year, I began using Helix tosta D6 and there too, I've had good results. The biggest success was the attempt to protect my iceberg lettuces, which are located next to the "slug hole", a concrete trough in my allotment garden – no-one really knows what it's good for, but I use it to park the water barrels next to the terrace. It's always damp and it's a major breeding ground for slugs. Right next to that, I put my trial veggie bed for lettuce this year. I took the risk of planting my surplus seedlings there and watered them with diluted Helix tosta, half a teaspoon in 10 litres of water. I deliberately left out two plants – and they were duly stripped bare. The others (around 20) are still alive and doing just fine. So, from now on, I'll be watering and re-watering my young plants with Helix tosta, and I'll carry on experimenting. Next in line are my cherry and apple trees.

I.K., Cologne, Germany, 2013

Photos: Wikimedia Commons
Arvicola terrestris; Peter Trimmins; Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license
Ermgaard; Snoop; Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license
Orange slug; Guillaume Brocker; Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license


Categories: Cases
Keywords: voles, slugs
Remedies: Arvicolinae, Helix tosta

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