How to get rid of little flies in your house plants
Fungus gnats are mainly an annoying nuisance. There is a biological control of a nematode which feeds on the larvae, but not available to most homeowners.
Alternatively, buy manufactured fungus gnat traps at a garden center. A love of fundamental mysteries led Chris Deziel to obtain a bachelor's degree in physics and a master's degree in humanities. A prolific carpenter, home renovator and furniture restorer, Deziel has been active in the building and home design trades since As a landscape builder, he helped establish two gardening companies.
Skip to main content. Home Guides Garden Pest Control. Tip In most cases, drying out the soil should kill the flies. The larvae stage - the two to three weeks of this bug's life that you don't see - is actually more of a plant threat. Why are my indoor roses dropping petals? The even tinier worm-like larvae hatch from eggs laid in the soil and mainly feed on algae, fungi and decaying plant matter in the soil. However, they also feed on plant roots, which in large enough infestations is enough to cause root injury and even yellowing or wilting of plant foliage.
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I think the best first approach is to change the conditions to make your pots less amenable to fungus-gnat-larvae life. That means watering a little less often so the top inch or two of soil is allowed to go dry.
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Next I unwound them them poured vinegar on them, hung them up in the kitchen and within an hour the strip was literally covered. I am this very moment trying the cinnamon powder, and the oil with vinegar solutions!
The sticky paper is not in the everyday plant shops close by, So no harm in trying some natural Do It Yourself ideas and see what works! Before you have them in your soil, top the soil with a thin layer of gravel. That can really help. I read this post just last night and decided to try letting the soil dry out before I did anything else.
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However today I discovered a new solution by accident. My infested house plants are on the windowsill above my kitchen sink and I had left a garment soaking in the sink in water with OxiClean. When I got home several hours later there were 21 fungus gnats in the water and none that I could see on the plants.
I have had a jar of apple cider vinegar with holes in the lid right between the plants for three days and not a single gnat went in, though vinegar has worked well for me in the past with fruit flies.
I believe it was the Oxi-clean that attracted the gnats, as I have had dishes soaking in both soapy and plain water and neither ended up with more than a single gnat floating in it. And from what I can tell, not a single gnat could resist the OxiClean water. I used some of it to replace the vinegar in the jar and left the lid off, to hopefully take care of any remaining larvae that might hatch.
I have noticed the fruit flies get into my coffee cup if I leave a little coffee in them.
I noticed this every time and now leave a cup of coffee with cream sitting out. I started out with the yellow sticky paper and it apparently has lost its appeal to some of the later generation of flies. They are not out of control yet key word being yet.
I have most of the items either on hand at work or at home. Have a great season everybody! Glad the sticky traps have helped. I have a question re: If I put an inch of pebbles or sand at the top of the herb pots tarragon, parsley, mint, rosemary, chives at the moment does this weight on the topsoil hinder the herb developing and growing bigger?
Watering from the bottom is difficult given my apartment situation and size of the pots. Top watering should be fine. The gravel helps deter the gnats from laying eggs.
A slightly larger grit than sand would be our preference. Glo-sticks work really well especially if placed alongside a small night light in the bathroom.
How To Get Rid of Fungus Gnats On House Plants
Requiring two AA batteries, the blue light they emit will also attract the gnats at night when placed alone near plants. I bought my Glo-sticks online. They will capture dozens of the beasties before you have to change the sticks narrow tubes with very sticky clear glue.
I used a spray with water, thyme eo, oregano eo and peppermint eo.
Plus a drop of dawn. Filled it up with water and sprayed it on all my outside zucchini and sweet potato plants. I barely found the infestation today but I decided to throw out all the soil and grow bag. The essential oils are you g living brand. I have used the peppermint eo with water with success in the past. Your email address will not be published. Fruit Flies Bugging You?
If the problem does turn out to be an infestation of fungus gnats, the more likely culprit to live in houseplants, I steer people away from the pesticide aisle and suggest a few simple environmental and pesticide-free control options: Add a thin layer of pebbles pretty! Fungus gnats lay eggs in the top layer of the soil and hatch from there. Clean your catch trays.
How to get rid of those gnats flying over the houseplants: Gardening Q&A
Gunky catch trays can be egg-laying spots for fungus gnats. They need moisture to feed. A dry-growing medium will decrease egg survival. So keeping the soil dry does offer some degree of control.
Personally, I would chalk it up to lesson learned and get the plant outside and deal with knocking them out outdoors if possible. The life span of this gnat is about 7 to 10 days.
During that time a female can lay about eggs. The larvae develop fast reaching maturity on 2 -3 weeks, with continuous reproduction year round.
Plants can become stunted as the larvae feed on plant roots. Larvae and adults can spread other plant pathogens helping to promote disease. Outdoors in the garden or landscape larvae may feed on plant roots. However, the damage is usually minor compared with their beneficial role in helping in the decomposition process converting dead vegetation into nutrients for plant growth.
There are several things you can do to gain some control on these pesky, irritating, flying insects.