I don’t talk enough about other pests affecting our houseplants besides from the normal ones, like aphids, spider mites, mealybugs, scale, and fungus gnats. But if you live in the South and can leave your houseplants outside for a majority of the year, or the whole year, there are lots of other insects to think about that can cause damage to your plants. We recently had someone reach out to ask if snails like Philodendron Moonlight and if they should be worried about an infestation when they put the philodendron outside?
Will Snails Eat Philodendron Moonlight?
Snails could definitely eat and live on philodendron moonlight, as they are known to feed on many plants. However, whether or not they will actually eat your philodendron moonlight depends on various factors such as the availability of other food sources, the size of the snails, and the health and condition of the plant.
Before you have to worry about if snails will eat your plant, you have to first understand where they are coming from. When you purchase your plant from the store and bring it home, look over every single centimeter of the plant including tops of leaves, undersides of leaves, and stems looking for snails. They can be white, brown, or translucent. I always like to either give my plants a shower before bringing them inside or spray off their leaves and wipe down with microfiber gloves. The types of snails you will find on a philodendron are land-snails, meaning they cannot breathe underwater, so they have to come to the surface for oxygen. Giving them a shower and flushing the soil will help to bring any snails that may be hiding in the soil.
Another way snails can get on your philodendron moonlight is if the plant lives outside. Interior pests like spider mites, fungus gnats, and aphids are super common inside the home. But when houseplants live outside, there are so many more insects/bugs they can come into contact with. Snails being one of them. Snails like damp, cool, and dark environments. They also like to live on top of soil where all of these conditions are met. Then they can stroll up onto the leaves where they can get a bite and never have to find a new home until all of the leaves on your philodendron are gone.
It’s very important to inspect your philodendron moonlight for snails when the plant lives outside and as soon as you bring it home, as they could come with the plant at no additional charge 🙂
How to Get Rid of Snails on Moonlight Philodendron
If you notice snails on your philodendron moonlight, pick them off by hand immediately to avoid the population from multiplying. Be careful when picking them off your plant; if you pull too hard, the shell can detach from the body and kill the snail. You can either put the snails in hot soapy water, but please know that this will eventually kill the snails then you dispose of them. Or you can place them very far away from your plants.
Philodendron Snail Prevention
Now that the snails are physically off of your philodendron moonlight, now you need to stop them from coming back to your plant. You can use natural, coarse substances to create a barrier around your philodendron that snails don’t like to cross, keeping them away. Crushed up eggshells, used coffee grounds, and lava rock (which you can use in soil to help with aeration). This creates a physical barrier to keep snails away. Copper tape can also work.
It’s super important to keep your philodendron moonlight in a well-draining, well-aerated soil and a pot with drainage holes to avoid the damp conditions that snails like to live in.