Fruit flies and gnats are a real issue during the warmer months and can ruin your fruit bowl and veggie patch. Not only are these small insects frustrating to be around, but also, they significantly reduce the lifespan of any produce in its wake. A banana could be good one day, and the next you’ll pick it up to find it’s become nothing but a peel. That garden you planted with all those beautiful looking tomatoes? Say goodbye once the fruit flies come!
Fruit flies and gnats also seem to multiply daily! Because of this, people hurry to the shop to buy the first pesticide they can find. Though pesticides succeed in getting rid of the little creatures, they are dangerous for human use, not to mention expensive.
So what is the solution?
Thankfully, there are a number of remedies you can make with things you already have lying around your kitchen. But first, you need to make the trap …
Before concocting your natural pesticide, you will need a cup, a rubber band, and plastic wrap. You will put one of the 5 following solutions into the cup, wrap the top with plastic wrap (tightly!), then secure it with a rubber band. Poke holes into the top with the tip of a pen or something of similar size. Then watch your concoction do its work!
Solution 1: Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar really is a miracle remedy. From encouraging hair growth to detoxifying your body, this stuff has made headlines recently for its miracle properties. Now, we will add one more use to the list.
Gnats and fruit flies are already attracted to the stuff but warm up ½ a cup and they will not have the ability to resist it! Add a few drops of dish soap to make the liquid heavier, and for that reason harder to leave.
Solution 2: Red Wine
Ever notice that gnats go straight for your wine once the corks off? That’s because they love the stuff! Or, at least they love the smell. Combine ½ cup red wine with 1 and ½ cups water and pour into the cup. Place the container where you see them congregating the most, and then watch as they fly into the holes, only to find that they can’t get back out.
You may need to empty the cup a few times and create a new solution, depending on the seriousness of your issue.
Solution 3: Milk, Pepper, And Sugar
If you have extra dairy on hand, heat up two cups of milk, then add 8 tablespoons of sugar and 4 tablespoons of ground pepper. Then just leave the mix in a shallow meal near the problem area. The pests will flight right in, but since the mix is heavy, they won’t be able to get out.
Solution 4: Overripe Food
What better way to attract gnats and fruit flies to your trap than by putting what they like most at the bottom of it: fruits and veggies! You may need a bigger jar for this solution to work, but the idea is the same: smash up the fruit gone bad (or just leave it be– they don’t care!), and voila! You’ve killed them with kindness (well, kinda).
Solution 5: Lemon Scented Sprays
If you don’t want to make a trap– or in addition to doing so– spray the area with a (strong) lemon scented spray in order to prevent them from spreading. Gnats and fruit flies don’t like the smell of lemon and so will avoid it at all costs.
For finest results, mix 2 cups of hot water and 10-15 drops of lemongrass oil in a clean spray bottle. Then spray onto your kitchen surfaces.
To keep the animals from gnawing on your plants, mix 4 cups of water and 2 cups of lemon scented dish soap, then spray your infested plants.