What are the best ways to get rid of gnats? No need to spray poison chemicals! Our guide outlines several ways to deter them from your garden and home, with safe home remedies.
Especially in the soil of flower pots, gnats are attracted to moist environments to set up home. We tell you in this guide the best ways to get rid of gnats with home remedies.
Around 1800 species of black gnats (Sciaridae ) are known worldwide, and experts think many thousands more species are waiting to be discovered..
In the house, gnats are often noticed because after watering, they rise from the flower pots and float around. The adult animals only live to mate and lay eggs, for which they prefer to choose moist soil . However, the larvae can cause significant damage to the roots of your houseplants and even hollow out the stems.
At first glance, black gnats are easily mistaken for fruit flies . However, gnats are usually found near the flower pots, while fruit flies are more likely to be found in drains and on the fruit plate.
Fruit flies also have a reddish brown color, while black gnats are colored. Sometimes you can see the glassy, about one millimeter large larvae of the gnats in the flowerpot.
Often the gnats enter the house as larvae in the potting soil . When buying, make sure that the packaging of the potting soil is undamaged .
If you want to be on the safe side, you can put a layer of gravel or quartz sand on the ground. This is how you prevent the gnats from laying their eggs in the ground.
You can also heat the potting soil in the microwave before use to kill any larvae. Simply put the desired amount of soil in a suitable bowl and heat the soil in the microwave for up to 5 minutes.With this method you can also make use of earth infested with black gnats.
Best ways to get rid of gnats with home remedies
There are a few home remedies to help fight gnats that promise success. Many of the methods have also proven themselves in the fight against other pests. These include:
- Coffee grounds and coffee : Pour half a cup of cold coffee , mixed equally with water, into the ground. The caffeine kills the larvae. A thin layer of dried coffee grounds on the soil of the flower pots also makes it difficult for female moth gnats to lay eggs.
- Matches : Burn three to four matches per flowerpot and stick the burnt sticks head-first into the potting soil. The contained sulfur kills the black gnat larvae.
- Oils : Tea tree or lavender oil can help fight black gnats. Simply pour 20 drops of essential oil into a liter of water and water the infested plants with it.
- Baking soda : Sprinkle a thin layer of baking soda on the earth and carefully moisten it. The larvae die when you ingest the baking soda.
- Dryness : Black gnats prefer to lay their eggs in moist soil. To combat mosquitoes, avoid watering your houseplants for up to two weeks if possible . The aim is for the upper layers of the earth to dry so that the black gnats cannot find suitable breeding grounds. You can also remove the dried soil and replace it with fresh soil to completely remove larvae and eggs .
- Water the plants in the future by adding the water to the flowerpot saucer . Wait a quarter of an hour and then pour off any water that is still in the coaster.
- Nutmeg : A thin layer of ground nutmeg will help you get rid of the gnats. Sprinkle the powder directly on the earth. When pouring, the myristic acid contained dissolves , the larvae die .
Control gnats with nematodes
If all the home remedies do not help, you can get help from the underground : nematodes of the type Steinernema feltiae are tiny nematodes that infest and kill the gnats larvae .
The microscopic parasites are introduced into the earth via the irrigation water and drive away gnats within three weeks. They are absolutely harmless to people.
Fighting gnats with fly strips
While many remedies to get rid of gnats focus on fighting larvae and preventing egg deposition, the yellow stickers fight the adult gnats. The insects are attracted to the yellow color and stick to the glue.
In principle, it is always advisable to use yellow fly strips in addition to the methods mentioned above to get rid of gnats.
Black gnats can cause considerable damage to your plants. As soon as you identify an infestation, you should act quickly. This way you protect your plants and also save clouds of gnats flying around.