Summer is great for a lot of things, like trips to the beach and hanging out with friends. But it comes with its own host of problems: humidity, mosquitos, and of course fruit flies. Fruit flies are hands down one of the most irritating aspects of summer. When they manage to sneak into your home, these tiny pests can bring about tons of annoyance. Luckily, you don’t have to spend your summer suffering.
We’ve got some helpful tips on how to get rid of fruit flies so you can enjoy your summer in peace.
Keep it clean
According to the College of Agriculture at the University of Kentucky, fruit flies are attracted to (surprise, surprise) ripe fruits and vegetables. We’re not saying you need to give up apples and carrots all summer; just make sure to keep an eye on your produce. If it’s ripening quickly, make sure to eat it or store it someplace safe.
Fruit flies can also be drawn to drains, sinks, and garbage. To play it safe and keep your kitchen free from flies, clean regularly and don’t forget to take out the trash.
Use apple cider vinegar
You probably already know that apple cider vinegar has a host of health and beauty benefits, but did you know it can also spell the end for fruit flies? Lifehacker.com says you can construct a homemade trap for the annoying little buggers with a cup and some unfiltered apple cider vinegar. The vinegar will lure in the bugs, trapping them so you can haul them out of your kitchen. It’s a totally green way to get those pests out of your home for good.
Try some red wine
No, not for you! Do you have a little red wine you can spare? Then pour a tiny bit into a bottle. Take a piece of paper and make it into a funnel; place the funnel at the mouth of the bottle and leave it out overnight. The flies will swarm to it while you sleep. In the morning, you can take the whole mess out to the trash and congratulate yourself on a fly-free home this summer.
Spray them away
If you’d rather get rid of those annoying fruit flies in a hurry, WikiHow says grab a spray bottle and fill it with rubbing alcohol (at least 70% rubbing alcohol if possible). You can spray this directly onto the flies and kill them quickly and effectively. Don’t want to mix up your own? Using Windex or another type of household cleaner can work in a pinch. This is a great technique for when you need to get rid of those flies fast and with as little fuss as possible.
The sweet smell of success
Want to keep your home from turning into a fruit fly free for all this summer? The blog, Natural Living Ideas, says all you need is a little lemongrass to keep those awful bugs at bay. Fruit flies hate the smell of lemongrass, so it’s time for you to stock up. You can use a lemongrass-scented cleaner, or get some essential oils for your home. The scent may be pleasing to you, but it will keep fruit flies from making your home their number one hangout. If you’re not a fan of lemongrass yourself, you can try for lavender or cloves — both of which have been known to repel fruit flies.
Check your plants
It’s important to make sure your house plants are well-watered throughout the hot summer, but be aware: if the soil is too damp it could be what’s attracting fruit flies into your humble home. When watering your plants, make sure there are no flies lurking around. Be careful not to over-water; the soil should be damp, not soaked through. And if it looks like a plant has been infected with fruit flies, put it outside until it can dry out sufficiently.
Buy some traps
When all else fails, or if you have a particularly troublesome infestation, it might be time to buckle down and buy some fly traps. If you’re concerned about your pets getting into the traps, you can always look for a non-toxic option. Or better yet, get a hanging trap that will keep out of the way while also keeping your home refreshingly free of flies. Here’s to a fruit fly-free summer for everyone!