In Romania we're still enjoying organic strawberries coming from our local farmers. But whether they are organic and Romanian, or from other countries and not organic, their price is too high, especially when you want to buy more than a small basket with a few strawberries. We are usually buying at least two pounds, but for a larger family four pounds are better. In the years before we moved to the countryside, we barely tasted a few strawberries each spring because of the high prices, but now I am growing my own strawberries in the garden and I have such a great time harvesting. They are growing on a small bed and are constantly multiplying, so I need to "weed" them every summer, after the fruits are over.
Strawberries begin to ripen by the end of May and continue into June here in Romania, which is also our rainy season. After raining so much over them and since the plants are crowded, slugs appear and start eating my strawberries. It's unbelievable how these small creatures can eat so much! They crawl all over a fruit and start making holes in it. Then, from one day to another, they can finish eating half a strawberry and, if I'm not checking them daily, I can find the whole fruit eaten by those little "monsters." Since I don't want to share my strawberries with them, strong measures need to be taken.
I needed to remove the slugs from my strawberries bed, but I didn't want to rely on chemicals, since these are fruit I am feeding my family. The solution is simple and easy and, most of all, organic! A few years ago, when searching for a method of getting rid of the snails and slugs from my garden, I found a simple tip that turned out to be very useful and efficient for protecting my strawberries from slugs, the beer trap for slugs. They said the yeast in beer attracts the snails and slugs which come towards it like cats to catnip. I just dig a few holes in the strawberry bed and sink a plastic cup in each hole, then pour some beer inside, just enough to cover the bottom of the cup. The next day I can empty the containers full of the slugs that fell inside and drowned. I have about six traps in the strawberry bed and it seems to work - the strawberries are good, not even a hole inside! I've also used the beer traps for the slugs eating the cabbage last summer and it also worked.
I know the slugs are so ugly and gross, but you need to deal with them if you are growing strawberries or any other leafy vegetable which the slugs love to eat. Don't be fooled if you don't see slugs until the strawberries are starting to rippen because they will appear just in time to start eating the ripe fruits. But when that happens, can do what I did: buy some beer and dig the holes for the slug traps. You'll save your strawberries and have healthy fruit for your family.