Thursday, February 27, 2014

Recycling Egg Shells

I use egg shells as a deterrent for pests~~~namely slugs!  It will not stop all of them from devouring plants but it does help quite a bit. The sharp shards are not very comfortable for the slugs to go over.  This is a natural substance so it will not hurt your garden, actually it's quite beneficial in a small way as it adds calcium back to the soil.  Also birds will come in and pick up the small pieces and hopefully, any bugs they see. I've also been experimenting with coffee grounds but you have to be careful because they are acidic to the soil...just using them around my Hydrangeas for now.

I don't mind the look of the shells around my plants. To me it's better seeing shells instead of an eaten off stub of a plant. Before I started doing this the slugs would eat all my iris's to the ground they never bloomed for years. Yes, amongst the weeds are my variegated iris'.

I still have to be vigilante and go on "Slug Saffari" at night (in the summer time) after the dew has settled on the plants.  I just grab my flashlight, glove up and pick the little guys off and relocate them, far, far, away. I know slugs are a useful creature...just not so many in my garden please!

If you would like to try this you need to sanitize the shells by either boiling for a few minutes or baking in the oven (toaster oven works too). As you know eggs can contain the bacterium Salmonella, so you want to be careful before setting them out where birds and other wildlife can get them.  I once looked out and the neighbors dog was standing in my squash bed eating the eggshells!!!

I just rinse and save them in the fridge until I get a batch to "cook". You just want to get them thoroughly hot, 350 degrees about 10 to 12 minutes. Then I use this high tech device below to grind them up a bit (usually one of my qualified assistants help with this). And then store them in clean pickle and salsa jars.  The cartons go to a neighbor who has chickens and wonderful fresh eggs! Just heard the girls are starting to lay fairly regular after their winter hiatus. I love being able to put each of these items to another use. 

If you follow this link it will take you to the blog of Lynda Bergman Decorative Artisan, she recently did a post on eggshells and I love how she hung them in a basket. Since I live in slugtopia mine are best scattered on the ground.

It's quite a satisfying feeling to sprinkle them about and know that your using a natural substance that is beneficial to the earth. Years ago I put plastic milk cartons out that I had bated for slugs and I looked out and my Abbey girl had one of the containers in her mouth tossing it around. She had to spend the day at the vets, thankfully, everything was just fine. I haven't used poison bait since.

Thank you for popping in~~~
Happy Hunting and Gathering!!!


  1. Who knew? Thanks for a great tip on keeping those nasty creepy crawlers away

  2. I can't believe I have never heard of this remedy for slugs. I just coexist with mine so as not to injure my dog with the usual bait. Since we have lots of eggs around here, I'm definitely going to give this a try. I bet the minerals from the shells are beneficial to the soil tool. Thanks for sharing this neat trick.


So glad you visited and left a comment, I enjoy hearing from you. Mickie