No matter how well you store your fruit, it seems like those pesky fruit flies still find it. And with the holiday baking season upon us—and hopefully lots of fresh fruit for pies in the kitchen—the last thing you want is a swarm of bugs in your cooking space. Unfortunately, these puny pests have great senses of smell which guide them to fruit from long distances. So just in time for Thanksgiving, we rounded up the best tips we could find for preventing and getting rid of fruit flies! Here they are:
- Proper Storage: although it can’t prevent them altogether, making sure your fruit is properly stored will attract less fruit flies—it’ll also keep your fruit fresh longer (bonus!).
- Proper Cleaning: the sink is one of the places that attracts the most fruit flies. You can wash away the fruit remnants that attract the bugs by mixing two liters of water with a small amount of bleach and pouring it down the sink. Wait 30 minutes before using the sink again.
- Lemongrass Spray: a simple spray can be made from hot water and a few drops of lemongrass oil—you can usually find it at a natural foods store. Put this in a spray bottle and spritz it onto windows or other openings to keep fruit flies from coming through. You can also spray it directly onto the bugs to kill them once they are already inside.
- Apple Cider Vinegar: the sweetness of apple cider vinegar makes it the perfect trap for unsuspecting fruit flies. Take a small jar and fill it a quarter to a half of the way full with the apple cider vinegar, then add a few drops of dishwashing liquid. Cover the jar with plastic wrap and poke a few holes on top and place it in an area with fruit files.
- Red Wine: you can make a similar trap to the one described above with red wine instead of apple cider vinegar (omit the dish soap if using red wine). The flies will drown themselves in either concoction.
- Rotten Fruit: you can also bait a trap with what the fruit flies are really after—old fruit! Place a piece of rotten fruit in a jar then cover the jar with plastic wrap and poke holes in it. Once you can see that the flies are all inside the trap, submerge in a mixture of water and dish soap for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Buy a Trap: for those of you who are less inclined to do it yourself, there are also companies, like Lee Valley Tools, that will sell you disposable fruit fly traps.
If you try one of these at-home remedies, let us know how it works! Do you have another tried-and-true method for keeping the fruit flies at bay that we failed to mention? Let us know! You can find us on Facebook and on Google+.