Live plants are virtually everywhere, so it will be useful for everyone to learn how to get rid of gnats in houseplants. Small insects multiply very quickly and damage the plants. There are several ways to solve the problem.
Why gnats appear
Gnats come from larvae, which lives in the soil. Most often, they reproduce over-actively in wet soil. This is because the larvae need moisture for growth. They grow when they feed on rotting organic remains and small roots of houseplants, so they can seriously harm them.
Black flies, or rather, their larvae cause the greatest harm to the root system. These flies are called Sciaridae, or dark-winged fungus gnats. There are also white, grayish and yellow-gray lies. Those are Drosophilae (fruit fly), which is not as harmful as sciaridae flies. Drosophilae are very fond of a fermented juice of fruits and vegetables, so getting them out of the house is quite simple. If you remove all fermented and spoiled food, the fruit flies will disappear.
Sometimes you won’t notice the appearance of gnats in flower pots right away, you will only see them when their numbers have increased dramatically. The reason for this phenomenon can be:
- excessive watering of flowers;
- contaminated soil bought in the store or brought from the garden;
- infected plants brought into the house.
The best way to solve the problem is to change the soil, but insects can stay on the stems and leaves, therefore it is necessary to carry out full processing of the houseplants. Before, all you would have to do is treat the plant and the soil with a weak solution of manganese to remove the pests. Today it is difficult to find a manganese solution in the stores. Other effective tools are below.
Ways to fight gnats
The first, and simplest, way to destroy the gnats is to use lye soap. Dissolve a little bit of the soap in warm water and spray the plant and soil from a spray bottle. As a precaution, you should process all the live plants in the house. After this, you should water the plants a little less so that the soil has a chance to dry up a bit. The best way is to add a moderate amount of water to the trays.
Some housewives prefer using aromatic ways of getting rid of the gnats at home. If black flies are found in the flowers, then you can apply these tools.
- Finely chop some garlic and spread it on the soil.
- Stick a peel of an orange, a lemon, a mandarin into the soil.
- Use real tobacco and spread it on top of the soil.
- Dilute mustard powder in water and pour it into the soil.
These methods might be rather slow, but they are environmentally friendly and safe. There is another old tool for controlling the gnats in flower pots.
Sprinkle the soil with hardwood ash and lightly turn over the soil. You will have to carry out this procedure twice to completely get rid of black flies. Ash is also a good fertilizer, so the flowers will start to grow better.
In addition to numerous folk methods, there are some professional tools, capable of removing insects. You can buy special chemicals to get rid of the gnats and other pests that live in the ground at the garden department. In addition, they will help you cope with many other pests, for example, with aphids and mites.
It is best to prevent the appearance of the gnats on houseplants, and it is very easy to do.
- Do not allow the soil to be wet for a long time.
- Use drainage in flower pots.
- Periodically turn over the soil.
- Do not pour the remnants of tea and other leftovers into the flower pots, as this will be an excellent feed for larvae.
- When you bring a new flower into the house, inspect it, and if you find black flies, treat it immediately.
Water the flowers only if the top layer of the soil is already dried. Drain excess water from the trays and clean them. Quite often, the black flies breed in old pots, covered with moss, so you should carefully wash the pots when transplanting flowers. If there is the probability of contamination of the soil, it can be steamed, frozen, or treated with a special chemical. You can sprinkle ash and coarse sand on top of the soil in the pot. All these methods will help to prevent the multiplication of harmful insects and save your flowers