Fruit Flies in my potted plants!!!

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Old 07-13-00, 09:22 PM
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I have 2 indoor potted plants that I leave outside on the patio for a few hours a day. The problem is, those annoying fruit flies have found a home in my potted plants!! I am not sure if there are any nests in the soil. I can not get rid of them! I do not want to get rid of my plants but would be happy to get rid of the flies!
Please help me out before those flies take over my plants!
 
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Old 07-14-00, 11:35 AM
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To monitor population and capture adults use yellow sticky traps. You should be able to get them at a garden center near you. You can make your own with 3 x 5 bright yellow cardstock coated with vaseline or a product called "tanglefoot" (again available in a garden center). The insect is called "fungus gnats". They live in the soil in the larval stage. In our greenhouses, when we encountered them, we used Gnatrol (bacillus thuringiensis, subspecies Israelensis). This is used as a soil drench. It is organic & effective against the larvae at a certain stage in their development before they leave the soil. Don't over-water your plants. Let the surface of the soil dry out between waterings. Overwatering is what they like. You'll have to treat several times at 4 - 7 days intervals to eliminate them. If you can not find Gnatrol look for BT Israelensis recommended as a soil drench for fungus gnats. The label should stipulate insects the product is designed to control. Also, you might look in your phone book. One of my suppliers was listed under fertilizers-retail and listed organic & biological pesticides were available. Otherwise, you are going to have to do some label reading.

I have had some people say fruit flies but what they had were white flies. Tiny adults, which have white,powdery wings & lay pale yellow or gray eggs on the underside of leaves. When a plant is disturbed, if there is a large population, it looks like a white cloud rising from the plant. Can be controlled with ryania and oil sprays. I'm sure you know the difference but just in case I've added it.

As with any products, please read label to identify insects it controls and plants it may or MAY NOT be used on. Best - retired commercial grower
 
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