Hibiscus flies - Knowledgebase Question

chicago, IL
Question by arimatla1
September 5, 2005
Every year I take out my big hibiscus plants (3)outside during the summer. When I bring them in I have tried all sorts of sprays to kill those nasty knats which attach themselves to the leaves and then fly all over during the winter. Will that lime and water spray talked about in the last program work for hibiscus? Or do you have any other suggestions.
Thank You

Answer from NGA
September 5, 2005


There's always a risk of bringing insects in when you bring your plants back indoors for the winter. Rinsing them off thoroughly before bringing them indoors will help; treating them to a tepid indoor shower a week later will help dislodge any insect eggs hiding among the foliage. A final step in preventing insects is to cover the soil surface with decoratative rocks or even a temporary cover of aluminum foil. Fungus gnats feed and breed in decaying organic matter and they love potting soil. Placing a barrier between the adults and the top of the soil will keep them from breeding. I wouldn't recommend using a lime and water spray on hibiscus - it will burn the leaves. Best wishes with your hibiscus!

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