Whether it’s the heat, the open doors and windows, or the bounty of fresh fruit, little clouds of fruit flies seem to appear as if by magic in the summer months. Common culprits that attract the unwanted guests are half-empty juice boxes, beer cans, potatoes, tomatoes, bananas, apples and garbage disposals. The good news? The lifespan of a fruit fly is ridiculously short – they only survive a week or so! The bad news? In that short amount of time, they can lay 500 eggs on moist surfaces in your home making their removal an ongoing drawn out battle! Don’t let fruit flies drive you crazy this summer.  We have some sure-fire ways to banish these pests from your home.

  1. Wash dishes immediately. Don’t wait until the end of the day to clean up after your meals, especially if there’s sticky residue. Before scrapping leftovers into the garbage, drain moisture and place scraps in a tightly tied bag in a trash can with a fitted lid.
  2. Wash fruits and vegetables in warm water, blot with paper towel and allow them to dry completely on a clean surface. Apples, potatoes, melons, bananas and other produce with tougher exteriors can be gently scrubbed with a vegetable brush.
  3. Place food in clean fruit bowls and, if possible, use a lid to create a barrier between fruit flies and your items.
  4. Spray disinfecting cleaning spray on your countertops, table, sink and floors to remove the buildup of possible sticky, sweet residues. Make it a nightly habit to make sure these areas are free of crumbs and debris.
  5. Use a portable, plug-in fan to blow the air around (especially around the fruit bowl), making it miserable for fruit flies.
  6. Replace or repair screens with tears and fill gaps around windows and doors with weather stripping and caulk to minimize future flies from moving in.
  7. Add a few pieces of basil to your fruit bowl in the kitchen. Basil is a great natural remedy to keep pesky fruit flies at bay. The strong scent and oil found in basil will help deter fruit flies and is a simple way to add a fresh scent to your home.

 

Photo by Robert Bogdan