The Q&A Archives: knats/fruit flies

Question: we have a bunch of annoying knats or fruit flies that come out at night. It just started recently,what is there to rid them?

Answer: I suspect what you are seeing is a fungus gnat infestation rather than fruit flies. These pests will breed in moist soil so there are several things you can do to discourage them. First, avoid overwatering the plants. Allow the soil surface to dry out between waterings -- many plants actually do better with this type of watering regime. To facilitate this, (or if you have some plants that require an evenly moist or wet soil), simply layer about a half inch of coarse sand or fine gravel on the soil surface. This will drain quickly and dry out and make it impossible for the gnats to breed. In several weeks, as their life cycle progresses and the adults die off without reproducing, they should disappear. You can also use a soil drench for fungus gnats such as Gnatrol.

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