How to eliminate fungus gnats from your houseplants

How to eliminate gnats from your houseplants

How to eliminate gnats from your houseplants. Fungus gnats are a big problem for most indoor plants.  In order to eliminate them, we must first find out where they come from.

Where do fungus gnats come from?

Fungus gnats come from moist soil, leaky drain pipes, overripe fruit, and especially around plants that do not drain well.  No doubt you have seen them circling around your potted plants, indoor trash cans, and decaying matter.  They are attracted to moist conditions.

The first thing to do is to make sure your plant containers are draining well.  Check the hole under your pots, are they plugged? If so poke your finger or a pencil to clear the debris in the hole.  It’s amazing how many times this little procedure helps alleviate fungus gnats and root rot.


Will insecticides work?

Spraying with an insecticide will work but the problem is the adult gnats have already laid their eggs in the soil or surrounding area.  The main problem is that the spray insecticide will kill the flying gnats but not the larvae that are hidden in the soil.

The larvae pupae will develop into an adult in 4 maybe 5 days this means a new swarm of gnats swarming around your houseplants and inside your home.  So…you spraying again killing the newly hatched gnats is good but the cycle repeats itself again, and again.

How to kill gnat larvae in the soil?

You can use a systemic insecticide to kill the larvae.  This means you apply the ingredient into the soil water it in and the larvae will die.  It is best to spray once again to remove any gnats that might be flying around.


How to eliminate gnats from your houseplantsWhat about organic products?

Use BTI in the soil it is an organic bacteria product that you apply to the soil that will kill these tiny insects.  Sticky fly traps will also do the trick for gnats flying around but of course not the larvae in the soil.  You can also apply neem oil into the soil to kill the larvae but make sure to dilute the solution at about half the ratio.  Here is a great post on how to use these products in your home.  Get rid of fungus gnats. 

Learn more about insects and diseases on plants. 

How to eliminate gnats from your houseplants

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