A vision of failure

When I set up my veg patch I was sure it was going to be absolutely chemical free* but I have failed:

Slug pellets

It’s because I’d like to succesfully grow beans. Last year I planted three lots of beans. I could probably do better at keeping the snail pubs topped up and regularly cleaned out. I could go on obsessive night time hunts with a torch, but I don’t. But there are so many snails here I swear you could knock down our house and build a new one just from snail shells.

So I gave in to the lure of easy blue blobs. And I don’t believe the ‘certified for organic use’ thingy on the label for a minute. But then I also don’t buy the idea that dosing your soil with sulphur is ok because it’s ‘organic’, if you need to do it fine, just don’t try telling me it’s organic. I don’t garden exclusively organically, although it would be nice, and so that’s more a plea for the word to mean something useful, rather than some UR GARDEN MUST BE UBER PURE OR UR DOIN IT RONG kindof thing.

Anyway, it makes me a little sad and feels like a minor failure to give in on this. Sigh…

P.S I don’t think anyone else should feel bad about using blue blobs, or other chemicals if they choose to. I very much believe that in life we draw our own lines around what we can/will do and that’s no-one’s business but ours. For example I use cruelty-free cosmetics but eat meat. These are my choices, yours may be different and that’s cool.

*well apart from the chemicals naturally present in soil, plants etc. We need another word for ‘extra-added-bad-chemical’ because there’s nothing wrong with chemicals per se. I’m chemical, you’re chemical, we’re all chemical (alchemical).

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11 responses to “A vision of failure

  1. Hi, I use the same ‘organic’ pellets as we too could build a house of snails and slugs. I’m not going to though as that sounds disgusting. I think after my time and attention spent on growing from seed, I would be upset if my seedlings were destroyed in one night. We tried the pub traps years ago but were still overrun with the pesky fellas and it was a pretty disgusting job to empty them! I hope all grows well! I agree too with the negative connotations attached to ‘chemicals’ – alchemical indeed…

  2. Sometimes the garden needs drastic action, especially when growing things to eat. There is a tendency to be a bit prissy and holier-than-thou with organic gardening. The other approach does not mean a return to the atomic sixties 😉 Long live your beans!

    • Yeah I mind drastic action less when it’s not my veg, but I’d wanted to keep the veg at least organic. Oh well. You’re right of course 🙂 no atomic sixties here.

  3. I have tried and failed too… my slug house was working http://katiepede.wordpress.com/2012/05/30/slug-house/

    But there were simply too many slugs for one house…. I bought the same blue blobs at the weekend,…. and also feel a bit poo…. I hope that is some kind of consolation…… Am going to try and use them sparingly though and buy more melons for slug houses 🙂 xx

  4. I spray neem oil and dormant oil in the spring for aphids and powdery mildew. It’s hard to know what is least toxic, but I try to do my do diligence and not use anything systemic or that might cause CCD.

    • Fortunately I don’t have too much problem with aphids. I use fairy liquid in watering cans on the box hedging at work to get rid of the box aphids and it seems to keep them under control.

  5. We too have an abundance of slugs although the frogs in the polytunnel seem to keep them at bay in there. I too buy the blue stuff, Ferramol, Supposedly organic!

  6. I’m a complete throw-back where slugs are concerned. Zap them hard and often with whatever comes to hand – the more virulent the better! Organic pellets just disolve in rain, nematodes wander off somewhere (plus I think they must make for a cruel death). So, blue pellets for me, and as many toads and hedgehogs as possible.

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