Fungus gnats are flies that lay their eggs on a plant, and then the larvae feed on it. Fungus gnats are a big concern for most houseplants and can sometimes be a nuisance.
Let’s get into more detail:
What Are Fungus Gnats?
Fungus Gnats are a type of fly found mostly in temperate climates. They are small and brown, with dark heads and pale wings. These flies feed on fungi, fruits, and decaying leaves. When they find food sources, they will lay their eggs there. Eggs hatch into larvae, which then feed on the food source until it dies, or they mature into adults, laying eggs to continue the cycle.
Fungus Gnats typically have a lifespan of about 1-2 weeks but can live up to 10 days if conditions are favourable for them to do so.
Where Do They Come From?
The fungus gnat is a general term for a type of gnat that prefers to live in moist, decaying plant materials and other organic matter. Fungus gnats are most commonly found in gardens, where they are attracted to moisture and decaying plant material. They can also be found in areas with high humidity, like bathrooms or kitchens.
The fungus gnat is the larvae of the fungus gnat fly, which lays its eggs on decaying plant material. The larvae feed on fungi and other organic matter while they develop into adult flies.
Natural Ways To Get Rid Of Fungus Gnats
There are several ways to get rid of fungus gnats. The most effective way is by using an insecticide, which kills the entire population of the fungus gnats and their larvae. However, this method is not always practical or feasible for people who don’t want to use chemicals in their homes or gardens.
Here are some natural methods you can try:
Let The Soil Dry
Fungus gnats are often a nuisance in the summertime. They can be found in damp areas, such as soil and leaves. The best way to eliminate them is to let the soil dry out. The fungus gnats will die when the humidity level drops below 50%. And they will not come back until the humidity is at 100%.
Hydrogen Peroxide As Larvacide
Hydrogen Peroxide is a natural disinfectant that kills fungus gnats on contact. If you want to get rid of fungus gnats for good, you should use hydrogen peroxide mixed with water to make a larvacide solution. You can also use this solution as an insecticide by spraying it onto your plants or infusing it into the soil around them.
It is also safe to use around pets and children and can kill fungus gnats in seconds. It kills larvae before they become adults and prevents them from spreading further into your home.
Vinegar For A Gnat Trap
Vinegar is one of the most effective natural ways to eliminate fungus gnats. It’s also an inexpensive way to deal with these pesky bugs. You only need a small amount of vinegar and some water, then mix it and place it near your windowsill or doorways where you see the most gnats coming in from outside.
Soap As An Insecticide
Soap is another natural way to get rid of fungus gnats. Soap is an effective insecticide for fungus gnats because it disrupts the insects’ ability to breathe by suffocating them. It also kills the fungus gnat larvae when they come into contact with it.
Cinnamon And Chamomile Kill Fungal Food Sources
Both ingredients work together to kill off the larvae of the fungus gnats, which are the food source of the fungus gnats. The most effective way to get rid of these gnats is by placing cinnamon sticks, chamomile flowers, or dried sage leaves in areas where they tend to frequent. The smell of these herbs will keep them away from your home.
Potato traps are a natural way to eliminate fungus gnats without using chemicals or pesticides. Potato traps can be made from potatoes, flour, water, and egg whites mixed to form a paste that can be applied on windowsills, doorsills, and other places where these pests may enter your home.
Fungus gnats will fly into the trap, but they cannot escape because they’re stuck in a gluey paste that is too thick to break through.
The traps can be made from paper, aluminium foil, or plastic wrap. You need to cover the trap with something that the gnats will want to fly into, like sugar syrup or fruit juice. The sticky traps work because the flies cannot resist flying into the sweet substance and sticking to it.
Apply Biological Controls
Another way of getting rid of fungus gnats is to use biological controls such as ladybugs, predatory mites, parasitic wasps, and predatory beetles. These natural predators will help control the population of these pesky insects.
The fungus gnat really affects and damages plants, so we need to know how to prevent them. The information above about natural ways to control this fungus gnat will help you have healthy plants. Furthermore, using these natural methods is not only good for the plant itself, but also healthy for you. You don’t have to worry about chemicals that might harm you.
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What causes fungus gnats?
Fungus gnats are attracted to moisture and lay their eggs on damp surfaces. The larvae will feed on fungi, bacteria, dead animals, and decaying plant material until they become adults. So, mostly damp areas are breeding grounds for fungus gnats.
What chemical is best for killing gnats?
The chemical that kills gnats is called permethrin. It is a synthetic pyrethroid insecticide, with its active ingredient being the neurotoxin derivative of the natural compound chrysanthemic acid. Permethrin can be purchased as a liquid, aerosol, or granule for use on clothing and other surfaces. It has been used to control insects such as mosquitoes and ticks.
Can you permanently get rid of gnats?
The answer is no. What you can do is manage the infestation. Gnats are attracted to light and water, so you need to provide both of these things for them to be trapped. Use the above natural remedies to see a significant environmental change.