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Bush and Cone Snail treatment

Discussion in 'Issues, Disease and Pests' started by Photosynthetic, Mar 27, 2014.

  1. Photosynthetic

    Photosynthetic New Member

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    I have problems with both bush and cone snails in my orchids, and read recently that a 10% ammonia solution is effective at killing them. I have tested that solution on live snails of both types and it seems to kill them almost instantly. I have also used it on a number of orchids, sprayed on the mounted plants and used as a drench on several in pots, with no adverse reactions to date. And ammonia is cheap.
     
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  2. Marni

    Marni Well-Known Member Staff Member Supporting Member

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    That's a new one to me! Any thing that kills bush snails is OK with me. It would be interesting to know if it works on the eggs as well.
     
  3. Photosynthetic

    Photosynthetic New Member

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    Ray Barkalow mentions it on his site as a 'Home Remedy,' and I have read about it on other sites as well. Have no idea if it kills eggs, but a University of Hawaii study reported that the bush snail eggs hatch in about two weeks, so presumably spraying every two weeks for a month or so would get all of them.
     
  4. Ray

    Ray Orchid Iconoclast Supporting Member

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    That was submitted by another grower, so I have no first-hand knowledge of its efficacy, but I'm with Marni - if it works, WONDERFUL.
     
  5. Photosynthetic

    Photosynthetic New Member

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    There is a lot of anecdotal evidence on the web from orchid and hosta gardeners about the efficacy of ammonia solutions on slugs and snails, but I haven't been able to find any controlled studies to reference.

    My own use at a 1:10 ratio (ammonia to water) shows that it definitely does kill the critters and that it doesn't harm the plants. Others have reported using solutions of up to 1:1 with no adverse effects to the plants. I suppose that the shot of nitrogen that the spray or drench provides might upset a controlled fertilizer regimen, but that would be a small price to pay.

    Mike
     
  6. Ray

    Ray Orchid Iconoclast Supporting Member

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    Household ammonia is supposed to be somewhere in the 5-10% NH3 range, making it 4-8%N, so your 10% dilution isn't going to do much to upset a feeding regimen. And...orchids are poor at foliar absorption of ammonium compounds compared to the root system..