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Re: Introduction and question: Emilia Hazelip method and dealing with slugs

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  • witchessocks
    let me clarify a little...jerome, it sounds like your land is over- mulched, over-composted. if you put straw down it will soak up the toxins and rot into
    Message 1 of 10 , Aug 1 4:43 AM
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      let me clarify a little...jerome, it sounds like your land is over-
      mulched, over-composted. if you put straw down it will soak up the
      toxins and rot into itself... causing decomposition of the straw.
      organisms will flourish in the straw, eating the rot. this will draw
      many insects like beetles, earwigs, slugs to come and feed on the
      organisms. but, realize, the slugs are eating over and up at the straw
      now, instead of in the soil near your plants. after a few generations,
      which happens fast at that level the organisms will change. as the
      straw decomposes and depletes itself, the organisms get less to eat
      and begin to turn on each other. eventually the slugs get, consumed
      and/or repelled by it's own food because the chemistry changes in the
      organisms. the good stuff in the rotten mulch goes back into the soil,
      but in a better and more complete form because it went through the straw.

      the way you put down the straw matters. don't put it down straight or
      neatly, throw it down so that it goes down every which way, creating
      criss-crosses which promotes seed germination. the grasses, weeds and
      grain, etc. will grow through those crisscrosses, drawing more toxins
      out of the soil. when you cut the weeds and other plants because there
      are just too many, never wipe out a whole species. cut some of every
      species and leave some of every species to go to seed. throw these
      down as mulch, but include lots of straw . put the straw over any
      mulch you have on there. you are trying to make the rot happen right
      there in the straw instead of in the soil.

      you said you put down straw and it drew slugs, but they still ate your
      potatoes. i think you need to continue putting down straw and
      eventually the straw will leach out the "infection" that is in the
      soil and turn it into good soil. you just didn't put down enough straw
      yet.

      i know you may want to favor the vegetables, by raising the temp and
      putting lots of compost and mulch on to favor the vegetables. but for
      a while, try to favor the soil...draw that rot out of your soil with
      straw and your soil will be healthier. after you've cleaned out your
      soil good, cautiously add more mulch to favor the vegetables...but
      watch the balance...you may need more straw at any time.
      >
    • Robert Monie
      Hi Robin, All these ideas have some merit, especially the one about the perennially replusive qualities of the classics of the Western canon to punks and
      Message 2 of 10 , Aug 1 10:38 AM
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        Hi Robin,

        All these ideas have some merit, especially the one about the perennially replusive qualities of the classics of the Western canon to punks and gangsters. I was once mugged, and the "perpetrator" angrily flung my copy of Tolstoy's "Ivan Illyich" to the ground in disgust, and then in cries of dismay and unbelief ("you mean this is all you're carrying?"), he hurled my copy of Homer's "Iliad" to the other side (my coat had big pockets). He netted about $3.17 from me, and I was able to retrieve the (slightly damaged) objects of real value from the ground and go on my way. I'm sure that CD's of Palestrina, J.S. Bach, Mozart, Debussy, or Olivier Messian would occasion similiar rejection.

        My plants all love these composers as well as good blues and jazz, so I conclude that there are no dangerous punks or gangsters among them.

        For the past few years, I haven't used raw mulch of any kind in my garden--just living green cover crops and well-cured compost. As a result, the slug and snail population has declined (but not disappeared). If I am growing succulents coveted by mollusks, I surround those babies with copper tape (I get from John Jeavons Bountiful Gardens) or even grow them in very large pots (green manure and all), their base well swaddled in copper tape.

        Wild Speculation and Wishful Dreaming Dept: A part of my garden has a thick growth of yarrow (the thin lacy kind, not the broad-leaf fern type) and catnip and lemon catnip as well. Slugs have not been observed in that part of the garden. (Is this a kind of Mozart-protected field?) Does it follow that I could plant succulents there and the slugs would not visit them?

        Finally, vegan farmer Ian Tolhurst says in his indispensible "Green Growing" (page 169)
        that keeping the pH of the soil between 6.5 and 6.8 minimizes slug severity.

        Bob Monie
        New Orleans, LA
        Zone 8



        witchessocks <witchessocks@...> wrote:
        doesn't compost and juicy mulch raise the temperature and cause
        too much rot too rapidly, and undesirable souring/fermentation,
        drawing slugs?
        how about growing some different cereal grains with the weeds,
        something that turns into straw right there on your off season. then
        cut the grain and put the straw debris over the ground around the
        veges. put some clumps of soil on the straw instead of chicken manure.
        wouldn't that be a little drier? also straw helps to hold back weeds.
        and the same de-composition that you get from loads of juicy mulch
        will still
        happen to the straw, but a little more slowly and more
        regulated/paced, instead of all that surplus, making the rotting
        process more
        complete and promoting a better balance and stabilization. when the
        soil is more stable, there will be a better balance of all the fungi,
        molds, insects and the predacious insects that feed on these insects,
        etc. fukuoka talks about this. also, he said to companion plant a
        multitude of vegetables, clover and many other plants there among the
        weeds. monocropping draws too many undesirables such as slugs at one
        time, whereas mixed
        planting promotes a balance of insects, body decomposition of insects
        which gradually leads to better soil and better plants.-- just some ideas
        to mix in with the others..8^D!

        btw, somebody in washington finally has his /her head on straight...i
        was just listening to the news and heard that the local powers that be
        have hit on a workable solution for getting rid of gang members that
        loiter at bus stops; they pipe in classical music in the bus stop
        areas! now-- that is a natural farming solution if i ever heard of one!
        the classical music actually repels the gang members and they leave
        the areas and go elsewhere on their own. now if we just knew what kind
        of music
        repels slugs we'd be sitting pretty!






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      • michael
        Same with toads. Create pond, toads will come. In a few years, all ages will be present, from the cute of this year to the fat mommas of years past. Goodbye
        Message 3 of 10 , Aug 7 6:03 PM
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          Same with toads. Create pond, toads will come. In a few years, all
          ages will be present, from the cute of this year to the fat mommas of
          years past. Goodbye slugs.

          On Jul 30, 2007, at 11:00 AM, Shawn Turner wrote:

          > The slugs are a simple fix. Get Ducks and chickens give them free
          > access to the fields.



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        • michael
          Copper is toxic to them. Copper sulfate is used as a paint for pear trees that have slug problems. ... [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          Message 4 of 10 , Aug 7 6:06 PM
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            Copper is toxic to them. Copper sulfate is used as a paint for pear
            trees that have slug problems.

            On Jul 31, 2007, at 4:42 AM, Jamie Nicol wrote:

            > supposedly the copper gives the mucous covered molluscs a small
            > electric
            > shock when earthed.



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