Installing a snail fence: what to keep in mind 

A snail fence is an effective protection against unwanted guests in your beds. If the fence is installed correctly, it cannot be penetrated by slugs, so your plants are protected from these pests without using chemicals. 

Below we explain how to install a slug fence and what you should look out for.  

How does a snail fence work? 

A snail fence is installed as a border around the bed. The top part of the snail fence is bent outwards to form an angle of about 45 degrees. Together with a top edge that is also bent outwards, this ensures that snails do not climb over the fence and are reliably kept out of the beds.    

How is a snail fence installed? 

When installing a snail fence, it is first important to ensure a solid base. The fence should therefore be sunk into the ground by about 10 centimetres. Use a spade or rake to dig a narrow channel around the bed. 

As a snail fence is usually 25 centimetres high, about 15 centimetres will protrude from the ground after installation. This is important to ensure sufficient height to effectively repel slugs. 

Connect the side sections of the snail barrier to the corner elements and place the snail barrier in the previously dug channel. Then fill the channel with soil and press it down firmly so that the newly installed snail fence stands upright.  

If the length of a single side element is not sufficient to enclose the entire bed, you can also slide two side elements into each other when installing the snail fence and thus adapt the protective barrier to the size of the bed concerned.   

What do I have to consider when installing a snail fence?  

For the snail fence to protect your plants from snails, it is important that it is installed without gaps. In addition, you must ensure that the mentioned height of 15 centimetres is guaranteed. However, as slug barriers are usually 25 centimetres high in total, this is not usually a problem in practice.  

Also make sure that the slug barrier is completely clear after installation and that no plants overhang or are in direct contact with the barrier. Otherwise, snails can use it to climb up and enter the bed despite the snail barrier.  

When is the right time to install a snail fence?  

The timing of the installation of your snail fence is very much up to you. For example, you can install the fence in autumn or wait until spring. However, for it to do its job, you should install it at the latest when you start planting your beds.  

To best protect your beds from slugs, we recommend spading the soil in late autumn and early spring. This will expose any slug eggs in the soil, which will be killed by sun, frost and predators. This will reduce the number of slugs in your garden in advance and save you the work of pest control.