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How to Get Rid of Gnats On My House Plants


Fungus gnats, or simply gnats as they are called, are those insects that can spread a lot of nuisance in your house by damaging your plants from the roots. You cannot just have them eating away at your precious plants when you have worked on them for months.

Gnats are also among those insects that should not be ignored because they multiply quickly and their larvae damages plants at the roots. Since larvae thrive in wet soil, you cannot always get rid of them by using insecticides. A female gnat lays about 200 eggs in a lifetime, thus, the gnats spread quickly to your other plants and may damage them entirely within weeks. Thus, if uncontrolled, you would probably be dealing with generations of eggs in one pot, even though the adult gnats survive for only one week.  They are usually found in black or gray colors, with longs legs and wings. They are not strong fliers and would usually fly out when you water the plants.

You don’t have to worry about the adult gnats as much. The larvae are more harmful because they are beneath the soil.  The larvae take a week to hatch and begin feeding on the surrounding roots. You can tell there is gnat infestation when plant growth slows down or when the plants begin to lose their texture. In that case, the plants would have to be thrown away.

There are several ways to explain how gnats may get into your house plants in the first place. For indoor plants, if there are open spaces or if doors and windows are left open for too long, gnats can get in. even the new plants that you purchase may have gnats that could spread to the rest of your house plants. When outdoors plants already have gnats and your bring them indoors, that is also how the gnats can spread and multiply.

Eliminate moisture

Gnats survive and breed in environments that are rich in moisture. Keep your house properly ventilated with exhaust systems to let the air in for a few hours through doors or windows. Remove excess water from the dark corners of the house after cleaning.

Water collects around the pots when you water the plants. Use sponges to absorb the excess. Furthermore, consider placing your indoor plants in those areas of the house that are likely to receive air.

Trap them with soap water

Make a mixture of water, washing detergents and vinegar in bowls and place them near the gnats. Repeat the process for several days to bring down the gnat population. When the gnats are flying near, the moisture would invite and drown them in the solution. Replace the water every day.

Jar traps could also be effective in eliminating gnats. Take a few jars, fill them with vinegar and water and make holes with a screw driver in the lids. The smell of vinegar would invite the gnats inside but they would not be able to escape. Discard the jars and repeat the process until you manage to get rid of them.

Time to change the soil

If gnats have been multiplying inside the house, chances are that the soil in your pots has become a breeding ground for gnats and is full of larvae. The damage is inevitable. Discard the soil, clean the pots and fill with fresh soil.

If not that, you could remove just the upper layer of the soil as that’s where the larvae and eggs are.

Water plants from the tray  

Since gnats breed in moisture-rich environments, they would multiply quickly if they are already present around the plants. You could try watering the plants from the drip trays and the soil will retain it. The first layer of the soil may not dry as quickly, depending on ventilation, and may allow more gnats to reproduce.

Boric acid traps

Try applying boric acid to sticky tapes and place them near the gnats. The traps would kill the gnats and this can help significantly in bringing down the gnat population.

Eliminate their food sources

Leaving food crumbs or leftovers after dining is a sure way to invite pests and insects and make your home unhygienic or a breeding ground. Always clean up after eating and wash the kitchen counters or tables with disinfectant, anti-bacterial detergents to wash off the odor.

Moreover, keep your indoors and outdoors clean every day. Clear any debris that provides shelter to insects and other pests.

Don’t leave anything g around the house or outside wet as moisture is a breeding ground for several insects.

Just swat them

When they are indoors, swat them on first sight. This would be helpful if they are away from the plants and flying around walls or windows.

Use insecticides away from the plants

If the infestation is severe and you need quick solution, use insecticides away from the plants. Make sure the empty. Replace the soil or in case your plants have begun withering, discard the plants and replace with new ones.

Always keep a check on your plants and maintain them. Take preventive measures to get rid of gnats and keep them out. Whenever you spot them, check beneath the soil for larvae and start taking action to remove them as soon as possible.

Use Solutions Pest & Lawn to Help Eliminate Gnats From Your Plants

If you’re worried about plants being damaged by spraying insecticides on them, don’t be! Solutions Pest & Lawn has a variety of products which can eliminate gnats and are safe to apply to your plants such as Dominion Tree & Shrub. You could also use Evergreen Pyrethrum Concentrate or Cyonara Lawn & Garden RTU. Apply the product according to label directions.


Now that your gnat infestation has been satisfactorily dealt with you can really enjoy your plants to their full extent. For more helpful pest control and lawn care advice, call us at 800-479-6583, email us at askapro@solutionsstores.com or live chat with a representative online.




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