Monday, July 18, 2011

Here’s a Quick Way to Get Rid of Fruit Flies

Ah, fruit flies. The pesky flying insects that seemingly appear out of nowhere to swarm your compost collection bucket and the rest of your kitchen. Aside from pulling out the miniature fly swatter, there are a few good ways to banish the annoying little buggers once and for all.

Stop Them at the Source
Fruit flies do not materialize out of thin air. You unknowingly bring fruit flies into your house in the larval stage on fresh fruit and veggies (just another reason to wash that apple before eating it). So if you wash fruit as soon as you bring it home, you may never see another fruit fly again.

You Catch More Flies with...
Make a simple fruit fly trap using a small plastic container with a clear lid. Poke holes in the lid with a toothpick and set a banana peel and some apple cider vinegar inside. Place the trap where the flies congregate.

They will be drawn in by the smell of the sweet banana and vinegar and then won’t be able to escape (evil laughing). If the plight of the poor imprisoned flies pulls at your heart strings, you can always release them into the wild (a.k.a. your backyard) but away from your compost bin.

Bye Bye Buggies
If every time you open the compost bin you wildly wave your arms around swatting at fruit flies, you need to take action there as well. Be sure to bury your food waste under leaves or shredded paper. This goes for backyard composting or worm bin composting. Fruit flies will not burrow into the pile to lay their eggs. Also, try simply taking out the kitchen collector more often so the flies don’t get a chance to settle in.


With any luck these tips will keep your kitchen and compost bin fruit fly free. Are there any other bugs bugging you? Leave a comment and I will address them in a future post.

11 comments:

  1. When my compost has these fruit flies I just add more brown compost-oak leaves, dirt, etc. on top of it and the flies seem to go away.

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  2. I can attest to the quality of this writing. Many of the information are proven with evidences that it made me easy to relate many of my works, as well. I suppose you have already helped a lot of individuals of the same need.

    Vermicomposting

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  3. I just opened my bins today and found a few cockroaches lurking around. Is this bad? I'm scared to turn the pile!

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    1. Holy creepy crawlies, Cheryl. I completely understand your concern. I've never seen cockroaches in my pile and hope I never do because they give me the heebeejeebees.

      That said, there are actually not bad for your pile and will work with other decomposers to break down your food waste.

      To deter them, keep burying your food waste deep in the pile (maybe even deeper than before). Turn the pile to heat it up, it may get too hot for them and also kill any eggs they may have laid. If you know anyone with chickens, you could invite the chickens over, chickens will gobble them right up.

      Good luck!

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  4. This is good info. I keep a wine bottle filled with a little bit of white wine next to my kitchen bin. Like your banana peel/vinegar trap, they are drawn to the liquid but can't ever get out and they drown in the wine.

    Thanks so much!

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  5. Awesome post.Very very informative & helpful article.There is very good tips for stop at sources & catch fruit flies. Thanks

    how to get rid of fruit flies.

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  6. very clear and simple, but I have experienced fruit flies burrying themsevles deep into my worm bin and we now have about a million eggs on all the leftover food... Will the worms eat the eggs? Is there any solution other than starting over from scratch?

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    1. Laurence,

      I received a rescue worm bin that sounds just like yours. I was able to get rid of the fruit flies with time. I first harvested what I could, began a new bin, used plenty of bedding, took the bin outside once in a while and fanned away any flyers, carefully burying all food scraps and viola, success!

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  7. Cockroaches ...Get a couple of vegemite jars or similar and rub vaseline around the inside up to the top. Put about 1&1/4" (30mm) of beer in the jar. I have caught about 3,000 in the past 15 months.

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