How can you get rid of slugs naturally? Slugs can eat everything in sight. Diatomaceous earth can help get rid of slugs permanently.

How to Get Rid of Slugs Naturally

This page may contain affiliate links. Learn More.

Slugs! A large population of slugs can decimate a crop in a few days there’s nothing they don’t want to eat. How can you get rid of slugs naturally? Diatomaceous earth can help get rid of slugs permanently.

With all the rain we’ve been having in Oklahoma they are flourishing like a giant mob of tiny monsters taking over the garden. They are sliming the lettuce, chomping the strawberries, mangling the seedlings, and being a general menace! Other than squash bugs, I hate slugs the most!

My Little Sprouts and I worked too hard toiling over planting this yummy food just to feed it all to the nasty slugs! UGH!

How to Get Rid of Slugs Naturally

slug on parsley, How to Get Rid of Slugs Naturally

That’s where diatomaceous earth comes in. It’s a great natural product which is actually made of ground up ocean fossils! Diatomaceous earth works when you sprinkle it around your garden surfaces in a fine layer. When pests crawl over it, it cuts the waxy coating on their underbellies and causes them to dehydrate and die. 

Diatomaceous earth slugs

Any post on this blog may contain affiliate links that pay me a very small commission for items you purchase using the links but costs you nothing extra. 

diatomaceous earth for slugs, tiny slug on lettuce leaf


How to get rid of slugs in the garden

Diatomaceous earth will help you get rid of slugs in the garden as well as several other pests including slugs and the nymphs or babies of the squash bug. It is even effective against roaches. When you use diatomaceous earth, sprinkle it on in a superfine layer like the dust on your furniture for the most effectiveness.

Wanna garden but you need the basics?

Diatomaceous earth stop slugs

Diatomaceous earth does not work instantly, it handles the problem over time. It takes several days for the pests to dry out. Diatomaceous earth must be applied to dry surfaces in order to be effective. Once it rains, you need to reapply it. It helps stop slugs in the garden more quickly than other pests because it dries them out. 

It’s also good to try to sprinkle it on the underside of your leaves as well as the tops. If you want to read more about other uses for Diatomaceous earth, click here.

Diatomaceous earth for gardens, bottle of DE and strawberry garden bed with DE applied

This photo courtesy of Erica Mueller

Another great thing about diatomaceous earth is it is safe for human consumption. You can sprinkle it right on your food crops and it will not harm you in the least if you ingest it.

I make sure to use food-grade diatomaceous earth so I don’t have to worry about the residue of it being on my food. In fact, many people take it regularly for their health. 

Using diatomaceous earth in your garden for pest control keeps it natural and chemical-free. When you wash your produce as you normally would, the diatomaceous earth is rinsed away. Click here to find out more about how diatomaceous earth works

Things to remember when using diatomaceous earth

Be careful not to rub your eyes with diatomaceous earth on your hands because it can scratch them. You also don’t want to inhale the dust as it could irritate your lungs. Use common sense when applying and storing any product.

The only downside I have found to using Diatomaceous earth is it does not discriminate and can harm bees. If you sprinkle it on flowering crops, you can cover them with a row cover so bees won’t approach them to pollinate. That will eliminate this problem. You can also apply diatomaceous earth in the late evening when bee activity decreases. Avoid putting it near the flowers where bees visit and you should be fine.

Are you overrun with squash bugs in your garden? Check this out. 

Don’t forget to pin for later

How can you get rid of slugs naturally? Slugs can eat everything in sight. Diatomaceous earth can help get rid of slugs permanently.

Similar Posts


  1. DE! I use it all around the coop and on the critters. I don’t know why I hadn’t thought of using it for slugs!! Thanks and my farmer man thanks you….the strawberries have been a favorite of the slugs and they are my farmer man’s favorite too! lol

  2. I saw a tweet in my timeline about using DE for slugs with a giveaway and thought I would check it out. I already use it around my chicken coop and run.

  3. I heard about giveaway through newsletter e-mail, chicken coop is great, we just got some chickens and it would be the great addition! Thank you for doing this giveaway!

  4. I love the chicken coop! I didn’t know there was so many uses for de, I’ll for sure be buying some if I don’t win.

  5. I have never heard of this product. I’ sure it will be valuable to many. I wish we had enough water here in SoCal to have a slug infestation. We can’t even grow grass any more.

  6. I found you on twitter. Our slugs has disappeared. I think something ate them. There is a lot of wildlife running around at night.

  7. I don’t think we have a slug problem in North Carolina…this is very interesting to me! Sounds like DE is a great product to use for a variety of purposed. Thank you for the recommendation and I’ll be sure to suggest this to anyone with a slug problem! 🙂

  8. We use DE but I don’t THINK Dave has tried it for slugs. Great suggestion! Here in Washington state we are known as the slug capitol of the world. Slugs here are huge, nasty and prolific. Any help in the organic slug wars are heeded! Thank you

  9. Slugs are one of my least favorite pests! They are the worst!
    I need to learn a lot more about DE. I have read that it has tons of uses, even for my chickens and dogs!

  10. I would recommend just using on non-flowering plants or plants that aren’t flowering yet to avoid possible harm to bees. There’s a shortage of the good guys, and way too many nasty slugs in my garden right now! Do you have ideas about how to get rid of a vole or pocket gopher?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.