Techniques for preventing pest damage depend on the pest in question, so it’s hard to know what steps to take against my mystery nemesis. To keep snails and slugs from approaching plants, I’ve learned I could put a ring of copper wire around each seedling or sprinkle dry eggshells in the area. For now I’ve gone with what I had on hand: coffee grounds. Supposedly their texture, scent, and caffeine content are distasteful to a number of different arthropods who might otherwise stop in for a snack. Here’s hoping.