Fungus Gnat Control - A Natural Approach:
rePotme is pleased to offer the latest and most effective means to help you control pests which prey on your prized plants. Fresh medium/mix is the fastest and most effective method we have found for the control of Fungus Gnats (which look similar to Fruit Flies). We have put together below a few combinations of terrific products that will be very effective in combating Fungus Gnat problems you may encounter at home, in the green house and in the office.
Fungus Gnats are much more dangerous for your plants than you might realize because their larvae feed on tender roots and adult gnats can spread disease.
The key to getting rid of Fungus Gnats is to disrupt their life cycle. Their life cycle is about 28 days and the adult fly lives for about 7 of those days. A multi-pronged attack is best. New mix, GET OFF ME! Natural Pest Control Spray, Bacillus thuringiensis subspecies Israelensis (BTI), and no poison Yellow Sticky Traps are the most effective tools we have seen and used ourselves. The solutions we offer here will rid your home, greenhouse, mix and plants of these annoying and destructive Fungus Gnats.
BTI - Bacillus thuringiensis subspecies Israelensis
There is a naturally occurring soil bacterium called Bacillus thuringiensis subspecies Israelensis (BTI) that kills the larvae of fungus gnats, mosquitoes and black flies . When BTI is eaten by these larvae toxins are released into their gut which causes the larvae to stop eating. Without food the larvae die. This interrupts the life cycle of these pests and the population then dies off.
BTI is not harmful to humans, birds, fish or mammals. Deemed Fit For Organic production by the USEPA in accordance with the USDA's National Organic Program.
The products below contain BTI and can be used in the following ways:
These small round bits containing Bacillus thuringiensis subspecies Israelensis (BTI) can be sprinkled on top of the mix or container. The idea here is to knock out the fungus gnat larvae by introducing BTI into their feeding environment. When you water over the top of the bits, BTI is washed into the mix.
Floating a dunk in your watering container will condition the water with Bacillus thuringiensis subspecies Israelensis (BTI) that can be used as a soil drench to get rid of fungus gnat larvae. Each dunk will condition water for several refills.
TAKE CONTROL FOUR from rePotme
This is our ultimate solution for going into battle with fungus gnats when you intend to win. Take Control Four gives you the tools you need to fight them in the air and in the mix. You get the Yellow Sticky Traps to catch and monitor, the GET OFF ME! Natural Bug Spray to knock down the flying pests in the house, the Bits shaker container to sprinkle BTI on top of the mix and two of the BTI Dunks to use in the watering container to condition the water that you use to water with. The BTI will kill the larvae in the mix and that is where the flying gnats emerge from. When you are done fooling around with Fungus Gnats, and you don't have the immediate option of changing out all of the mix, consider "taking control" of the situation with this four pronged approach. This is the ultimate battle gear and we would argue it is the best way to go after the problem because it allows you to fight the pests on multiple levels to succeed quickly and decisively.
TAKE CONTROL THREE from rePotme
When you are done fooling around with Fungus Gnats, and you don't have the immediate option of changing out all of the mix, consider "taking control" of the situation with this three pronged approach. You get the Bits Shaker Container to deliver the BTI, the GET OFF ME! Natural Bug Spray to knock down the flying pests and the Yellow Sticky Traps to catch the flying Gnats when they leave or try and return to the plant to feed and reproduce. This multi-pronged approach hits the Fungus Gnat population hard by attacking them in the air and in the mix.
The ONE TWO PUNCH from rePotme
The ONE TWO PUNCH gives you two products in one easy to order spot and includes the non toxic no poison yellow sticky traps and our 1 Quart Natural GET OFF ME! Spray Kit. You get two effective weapons, the Natural Cinnamon Spray to knock down the flying gnats that may still be in the area and the super sticky yellow traps that they are attracted to.
Yellow Sticky Traps
All natural, non-toxic, simple yet effective pest control for fungus gnats, aphids, thrips and more. Flying insects are attracted to the color yellow and get stuck on the ultra sticky surface of these traps. Use them vertically with the included wire stand or horizontally along the pot edge. No odor, no chemicals, double sided 3x5 inch adhesive yellow cards.
Getting Rid of Fungus Gnats with Fresh Mix
When fungus gnats attack, the best option is to replace old mix with fresh new mix so that your plant can flourish without you or the roots being attacked by invasive bugs! Replacing the mix the larvae feed on and live in knocks out the larvae stage and the population! One key to success is avoiding peat moss based mixes which can be a haven for fungus gnats. At rePotme we use Coir (ground coconut husk) instead of peat if a mix requires that type of fine particle media rather than cheaper peat moss which can be found in lesser grade mixes and potting soils from garden centers and big box stores. Fresh Mix by itself, for orchids or houseplants, is most effective for getting rid of the larvae stage and thus eventually the population. Fresh mix gets to the heart of the matter and does so immediately. It is also wise to add some additional muscle if you have a heavy infestation across several pots and/or if you want the fastest relief possible. These added elements include our BTI Mosquito Bits and Dunks, Natural GET OFF ME! cinnamon bug spray and/or our super sticky no poison yellow sticky traps.
Additional Tools and Tips for Knocking Out Fungus Gnats in Orchids and Houseplants:
There are some additional all natural steps you can take in addition that should be helpful in getting rid of pesty fungus gnats:
You can add 50% rubbing alcohol to your GET OFF ME! Spray and use that directly on the surface of the mix. The cinnamon and alcohol combination will kill the gnats and larvae it contacts.
Adding about 1 inch of sand from our media section to the surface area of the mix can trap the flying gnats below the sand and prevent them from escaping to mate and lay eggs. A thick layer of perlite can have a similar impact but we like the sand better because it is heavier and stays put longer. Either of these will promote drying at the surface which the larvae can't tolerate.
Placing fine mesh screen over the mix and any openings to the pot will similarly restrict the flying gnats from leaving or entering the mix. Weedblock fabric can be perfect for the task as it has very tiny holes which allow water and air to pass but not the Gnats. This approach also keeps the Gnats from completing the cycle of leaving mating and returning to lay eggs. Ladies stockings can work well this way as well.
Using an old table fork or similar tool to vigorously till the top layer of soil is another tip as this will promote drying and crush larvae and eggs that are present.
Let the plant dry out as much as possible (even to the point of a little stress) to eliminate the damp conditions that the fungus gnats thrive on.
Once again, a multi-pronged attack is essential and the products and steps above should bring rapid relief from Fungus Gnats. The approaches listed here are poison free and developed with a focus on a healthy space living environment for you and your family and the best care for your prized plants.
- What is wrong with my existing mix and why will new mix solve the problem I am having with fungus gnats?
Fresh mix is the best weapon against these nasty critters because older mix breaks down and becomes attractive to bugs like fungus gnats which can get into the mix from outdoors or even from a new plant you bring into the area. We recommend repotting all plants regularly to avoid creating breeding grounds for insects and also because your beautiful plants will thrive and flourish in fresh mix. In many ways this is just like changing the oil in your car. If done regularly your car performs better and lasts longer. That is true for all of your plants too, and changing the mix also protects your space and your plants from insects and disease. Fungus Gnats feed on fungus and fungus is a byproduct of mix that is old and breaking down. Pouring material into the mix to kill the insects does not improve the quality of a mix that has gone bad.
- What about mixes and media from "big box" stores?
- Unfortunately, we have heard from many people who have purchased material that has been sitting around inside or outside familiar named stores that bring unwanted pests in to their homes, offices, greenhouses etc.. This can happen because the bags may have holes and/or they have been sitting around on shelves or outside in moist environments according to sales flow or seasonal activity. Here at rePotme, every mix is hand made and packaged and each batch is small and personally tended to. Fresh mix, hand made and rushed to your door. We sell our mixes rapidly so nothing sits around for long. Unlike lesser grade mixes for houseplants, our classic potting mix for houseplants is blended using coir rather than peat. Coir is a less hospitable medium for fungus gnats. Old fashioned quality and care is what we are all about. Would you have it any other way for your prized plants and your indoor space?
- Why use a "multi-pronged" attack on Fungus Gnats?
- Fungus Gnats are only part of the problem, the part you see and that annoy people in the home, office, and greenhouse. Unfortunately, the life cycle includes the adult flying gnat, and then the egg, larva and pupa which reside in the mix. Attacking all cycles at once will destroy the problem quickly and effectively. This approach is often less time consuming than other methods which can take weeks and that leave you suffering the effects of the flying fungus gnats all the while.
- How do I know which mix to use for replacing what I have?
- We make mixes for all plants, from orchids to houseplants and from cactus to African violets. Our houseplant blends are great for any plants in the home, our orchid mixes are outstanding in quality and variety and if you aren't sure, we are always available by email or phone to help you decide on the best mix for your particular plant. All of our mixes are identified by plant type(s) that they are best suited for and we even provide a mix finder tool right here on the website.
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