6 Strategies on How to Kill Fungus Gnats

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how to kill fungus gnats

Fungus gnats are a common problem in indoor gardens and hydroponic systems. They’re tiny, pesky flies that can cause major problems for your plants if you don’t take action!

Here’s what you need to learn about these pests and how to kill fungus gnats.

Before you learn how to get kill fungus gnats, what are they?

Fungus gnats are tiny flies that live in moist environments such as

  • Soil, and;
  • Potting mix

They are commonly black or dark brown and can be anywhere from 1/8th to 1/4 inch long.

They are also pretty harmless. They don’t bite or sting humans, and they don’t carry diseases. But they have an annoying habit of swarming around the soil in your houseplants, making it difficult to enjoy them without swatting away these tiny little pests all day.

There are six types of fungus gnats that you might encounter, and these are the following.

  1. Sciaridae
  2. Mycetophilidae
  3. Ditomyiidae
  4. Bolitophilidae
  5. Diadocidiidae
  6. Keroplatidae

These are also some things you can take note of about these pests.

  • Fungus gnats will not hurt you or your plants, but they can cause damage to roots and leaves.
  • They also carry plant diseases on their bodies and legs.
  • If you notice fungus gnats in your potted plants, it’s important to take action quickly to prevent further damage and keep the problem from spreading.

The good news is that there are lots of ways on how to kill fungus gnats! Read on with our best tips on how to maintain your plants pest-free!

How to kill fungus gnats in your garden?

There are different ways how to kill fungus gnats, and here’s how you can start.

Option 1:

Use a spray bottle filled with soapy water and spray the larvae on the soil and other surfaces where they might be around your home. If you notice that there are still some eggs, then add some vinegar to the mixture and continue spraying for about three days.

Option 2:

You can also try to use a paper towel or cotton balls to collect them, and that’s one way of killing fungus gnats. You can then throw them away in a sealed container as soon as possible because they might hatch into adults after being exposed to light for several hours.

Option 3:

You can use diatomaceous earth, an organic substance that can kill fungus gnats by absorbing their soft bodies as they walk through it, which causes them to dehydrate quickly, causing death within 24 hours!

Option 4:

An insecticidal soap spray works by attaching itself to the insect and dissolving its outer layer, which eventually causes the insect to dehydrate. The soap itself doesn’t harm your plants. It just kills the gnat!

Option 5:

Treat the area with insecticides such as pyrethrin spray, which are safe to use around pets and children when used correctly. Just mist the pyrethrin spray on your plant’s surfaces. Make sure that it’s not dripping wet. Mist is enough. Spray it in three to four weeks.

Option 6:

Trap them using yellow sticky traps. They’ll stick themselves onto these traps as soon as they land on them, making it easy for you to dispose of them without having to touch any nasty creatures!

How to kill fungus gnats on houseplants?

1. Hydrogen peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is the perfect answer on how to kill fungus gnats on houseplants. It’s easy to use, and it won’t harm your plants.

Follow these steps in using hydrogen peroxide to kill fungus gnats on houseplants.

  • Combine one part of hydrogen peroxide and two parts of water in a spray bottle. 
  • Shake well before using. Spray and apply it to the affected areas of your plant and allow it to sit for five minutes. 
  • You can also mist your plant with water to speed up the process if needed. Just make sure that it’s not too wet or dry!

2. Neem oil

Neem oil is a great option for killing fungus gnats on houseplants. It’s not as harsh as other pesticides and organic, so it’s great for the environment.

To treat fungus gnats with neem oil, you’ll need to:

  • Spray the plant leaves with neem oil every two weeks until all of the gnats have been killed off.
  • Make sure that you leave the plant in a place where it can get plenty of sunlight each day. Fungus gnats are most active when it’s dark and cool, so they’ll be more likely to die if they’re exposed to lots of light during their vulnerable times!

You don’t have to kill fungus gnats when you can prevent them early!

Believe it or not, there are ways how you can make your garden fungus gnats-free. Take a look at these tips we’ve gathered so you don’t have to worry on how to kill fungus gnats later on.

  • Keep your soil moist but not soggy. Fungus gnats thrive in wet conditions, so if you have potted plants with drainage problems or overwatered pots, this is a good place to look for them.
  • Make sure there’s no standing water around your houseplants, especially if they’re potted in plastic pots and sitting on top of saucers full of water. This is another place where fungus gnats will thrive.
  • Make sure to use sterile potting soil containing no organic material, such as peat moss or coconut coir. This will prevent fungus gnat larvae from developing into adults, which are the ones that damage your plants.
  • If you notice small black specks on the surface of your plant’s roots or in its potting soil, those are probably fungus gnat eggs! You can remove them with a toothpick or tweezers and place them in soapy water for disposal.
  • Before purchasing your plant, inspect it by checking its base and see if it’s generally healthy and if there are no signs of fungus gnat larvae or anything else.
  • If you want to ensure they’re safe for planting, quarantine them for three to four weeks away from your other plants.

Eliminate fungus gnats as early as possible!

You’ve reached the end of the post, and that’s no easy feat. Fungus gnats are annoying little buggers, but hopefully, this post has given you some good tips for getting rid of them.

Fungus gnats can be a real pain, and they will not go away on their own. But if you follow the options, steps, and tips mentioned above, you can eliminate them and keep them from returning.

Have you tried any of these methods? What did you think? Do you have any other tips and tricks for getting rid of fungus gnats? Let us know by commenting below!

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