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Nairaland Forum / Nairaland / General / Agriculture / How To Get Rid Of Soil Gnats In Houseplants (495 Views)
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|How To Get Rid Of Soil Gnats In Houseplants by datedogirl(f): 9:54am On Feb 05, 2020|
Soil gnats or fungus gnats are tiny black flying insects in houseplants soil, and they crawl around on top of the soil or fly around the plants. They are one of the common and pesky houseplant pests, and they can infest any plant that is growing in soil. You will notice these indoor plants pests crawling out of the potting soil or simply flying around your plant when water or something disturbs the soil. It is a yucky sight.
Furthermore, fungus gnats live and breed in the soil; the adult gnats lay eggs in the soil, and the larvae i.e., tiny white worms that are difficult to notice with the naked eye, feed on roots and other organic matter in the soil.
Are soil gnats harmful to plants?
Fortunately, soil gnats are not harmful to the plants, so they cannot kill houseplants. However, they are a nuisance and can cause root damage if the infestation is heavy. Otherwise, they are only there to eat rotting roots.
Besides, soil gnats are likely to drive homeowners crazy even though they do not pose a threat to your houseplants. Come to think of it, who wants tiny insects flying all over the house? The best thing to do is to get rid of these gnats, but first, you need to understand where they come from, so you know how to block the source instead of just soil gnats.
Where do soil gnats come from?
Unfortunately, soil gnat infestation can come from anywhere, but the most common ways these pesky pests can come to your home are through newly purchased, but infested plants, or in a bag of potting mix that you bring indoors.
Furthermore, soil gnats can also come in with a plant that was outside during the summer; they can even fly in through the screen of an open door or window. So identifying where they came from can be quite tricky.
How to get rid of soil gnats in houseplants
It will be difficult, but possible to eliminate soil gnats from your home, especially when you have a large number of indoor plants. The adults can fly or jump from one plant to the next, laying eggs wherever they find moist soil. The adult gnats only live for a few days. So if you can get rid of all the larvae, your soil gnat problem will go away.
You do not need to use toxic synthetic pesticides when dealing with these pests; gnats can e fought using all-natural pest control remedies and methods. Below are some of the best ways to protect your houseplants from flying gnats.
Apart from other health benefits, neem oil works effectively when it comes to eliminating household pests; it has a residual effect that prevents pest infestation.
Control soil moisture
Soil gnat larvae do well in a moist soil; they cannot survive in dry soil. One of the natural and effective ways to get rid of gnat larvae is to ensure you never overwater your plants. However, do not allow your soil to dry out entirely on most houseplants. Use can get a soil moisture gauge to maintain the perfect level of moisture for your houseplants. Indoor plant watering devices also make it easy to water houseplants and prevent you from overwatering your plants, thereby making it not suitable for soil gnats to live and breed in your home.
Organic pest control products
Not all pest control products are chemical-based; there are natural insecticidal products that can help you get rid of gnats from your houseplants. Also, you can use a soapy mix and spray it into the top of the soil to kill gnats in potted plants. If you are using organic pest control products, follow instructions strictly to avoid damaging your plants.
Water plants from the bottom
Adult gnats do not need to burrow deep into the soil to lay their eggs. The gnats live in the top inch of the soil that tends to stay moist when you water the plants from the top. However, bottom watering makes it easy to maintain a dry soil without risking the health of the plants.
Pour water into the plant's drip tray or cachepot, and let the plant to soak up the water through the drainage holes. Do not allow your plants to sit in water for too long; drain any remaining water after 30 minutes of soaking.
Yellow house plant sticky stakes
Put a yellow sticky trap near the plant to attract and capture the adult fungus gnats. It is one of the fastest ways to control and get rid of adult soil gnats. However, it does not affect gnat larvae. You can add this method to any other technique that can effectively get rid of larvae from houseplants.
Also, you can remove the top inch of potting soil and replace it with new, sterile potting soil. It prevents the larvae from hatching into adult soil gnats.
Non-toxic soil covers
Soil covers help to control gnats in soil and prevent them from laying eggs. Replace the inch of soil with a layer of sand, gravel, or decorative moss soil covers. Besides, it adds a decorative touch to your houseplants.
The solutions listed above will help you get rid of pests from houseplants and also prevent them from infesting your home. However, if it is too much of a hassle, you can call a professional pest control company to eliminate pests from your home, and garden.
|Re: How To Get Rid Of Soil Gnats In Houseplants by TrixieC: 11:41am On Feb 07, 2020|
Gnats are indeed a nuisance. Every spring and autumn they appear in my place, especially in the kitchen. But that's my fault, sometimes I forget to clean my house and that attracts various pests, gnats and cockroaches included. From my experience, the usual electric zapper is enough, just as Nicholas Martin advised in his blog. But if your house is heavily infested by those then I would recommend placing a few glue traps and ultrasonic repellents as well.
|Re: How To Get Rid Of Soil Gnats In Houseplants by datedogirl(f): 4:11pm On Feb 10, 2020|
I am glad you were able to get rid of them. They are annoying, can't stand them lol especially when they are in the kitchen!
|Re: How To Get Rid Of Soil Gnats In Houseplants by my2chains(m): 4:29pm On Feb 10, 2020|
Why did you not recommend using tatase abi na chili pepper,
you will be really surprised to see all those gnats dancing naira marley soapy dance with great pains and running as fast as their legs can carry them,
when their body scratch them for the whole day,
they will never for life forget the experience and ever return again
even my muslim brothers will confess that jesus is the lord when hot pepper spray touches their skins talkless of all this weaker pest
just my 2 cents advice
|Re: How To Get Rid Of Soil Gnats In Houseplants by datedogirl(f): 3:59pm On Feb 12, 2020|
funny, thanks for the tip
|Re: How To Get Rid Of Soil Gnats In Houseplants by my2chains(m): 7:45pm On Feb 12, 2020|
its indeed really funny,
dont you know that hot pepper spray can really cause temporary madness on someone?
The person can really go mad for 8 hours straight without looking back,
as for those pest and gnats am sure they can sacrifice to you their lives and the lives of their parents in pleeding with you not to spray on them any hot pepper spray ever again
they can even go as far as sacrificing the life of a guy here called healthserve just for you to leave them alone in peace
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