GNATS - How to get rid of them?

Gina Garbo
by Gina Garbo

Somehow my house and garden got tiny gnats that killed my fuchsia plant and fly everywhere. I have tried ALL the Web recommendations - soap and oil dishes, sand in the pots, crushed bananas in a covered dish with holes, pest strips, etc, Anyone have a better idea? Both honey and corn syrup on yellow cardboard is not strong enough to catch them... I don't want to use poison spray. THANK YOU.

  105 answers
  • Mona Blake Mona Blake on Jul 01, 2019

    This was the year for them. They were so bad at my house we missed spring completely. They hate vanilla. Real vanilla, not artificial. But real vanilla fades fast.

  • Dee Dee on Jul 01, 2019

    If you have gnats in the house, it usually means the presence of one or both of these small flies: FUNGUS GNATS. If the flies are small, black, and flying around windows or potted plants; then they are probably fungus gnats. ... They live in the soil of potted plants.

  • Nancy Turner Nancy Turner on Jul 01, 2019

    In the house, cider vinegar with a few drops of dish soap, cover it with saran wrap and poke a few small holes they can get through and not get out, as an attractant. I know they are ugly, but the fly strips that you hang from the ceiling will really help get the numbers way down. So far, we have avoided them in the house this year, but outside they are miserable. I am allergic to them and get huge welts that last almost two weeks, even treating them.

  • Gina Garbo Gina Garbo on Jul 02, 2019

    OK- The vinegar and soap did NOT work... The fly/gnat strips worked a LITTLE, but as they are not yellow in color they worked minimally. I also tried smashed bananas, raw potatoes, and vegetable oil in closed dishes.... Only a few worked at a MINIMAL level. Isn't there ANYTHING to catch these besides poisonous spray? Putting SAND in the pots seemed to also help a bit.

    • See 3 previous
    • Ellen B Ellen B on Apr 27, 2024

      Sprinkle cinnamon on top of plant soil

  • Gina Garbo Gina Garbo on Jul 02, 2019

    I saw this but it did not work... There are MANY ideas, and they only reduce a FEW GNATS, without poisonous stray...

  • Lisa Lisa on Jun 30, 2014
    Absorbine junior is very effective for keeping gnats away. Apply to brim of hat, bandana and on pulse points like you would apply perfume. Old farmers trick!
  • Change of Art Change of Art on Jun 30, 2014
    If you can get a fan moving the air near you, that'll always help – but I've gotta second Lisa's recommendation for those pesky gnats: Absorbine Jr.! Just found out about it from my golfing brother-in-law. He's a true doubting Thomas (for heaven's sake – I just realized, he really IS – that's his last name!). Anyway, he thought his golfing buddies were nuts when they broke out a little bottle and started applying it to the brims of their golf hats. (Note, they were playing very close to the Mississippi River.) But, after the first round – where he was the only one being 'swarmed' – he gave in. Said it was like magic. "Poof!" – they were gone! (Just a reminder, eliminate any & all standing water in your yard – it only takes a day or two for mosquitoes to take hold!)
  • Tagwatts1 Tagwatts1 on Jul 28, 2016
    I can tell you what we have done. Not sure it will help you. We have some windows that quite large and in the evenings we like to open them up a bit to have a cool breeze come. The screens were not adequate. We purchased some sand screens and added them to the existing screens and this works very well. I hope this may help you. you can purchase rolls of screen that have very tiny and small openings in them . Go rto a good hardware store, or Home Depot, Lowe's . They will have what is needed.
    • Ivan Ford Ivan Ford on Jan 18, 2024

      Drown them in water.

      Place the affected plant in a bucket of water up to the soil level for 3 days. Adult gnats are easy to knock in the water where they drown as well as their larvae .

  • Linda Linda on Jul 28, 2016
    Buy a finer grade of nylon screening from hardware store and attach over top of your present screen using self adhesive velcro around the edges. You can remove it in the winter if you wish.
  • Southernlady Southernlady on Jul 29, 2016
    Standard screening material does leave "holes" that no see um's can get thru. You need a finer grade sceeening material. Standard insect screening is made from woven strands of material. The tightness of the weave, or mesh size, is measured in the number of strands per inch. Standard mesh is 18 x 16, which has 18 strands per inch in one direction and 16 strands in the other direction. For large expanses of unsupported screen, you might consider using 18 x 14 mesh. This has slightly heavier strands, so the screen holds up better when stretched over large areas. If you live in a climate where tiny “no-see-um” bugs are a problem, you might need 20 x 20 mesh screen, which offers the best protection from teensy pests.
    • Miranda Wick Miranda Wick on Sep 22, 2017

      HI, I am having the same issue with gnats coming inside my house. I have Pella windows and currently my screens are 18x18 and they also sell 21x17 screen. Do you think it would make much of a difference?

  • GoddessOdd GoddessOdd on Jul 29, 2016
    You can purchase very fine screening at the big box stores, and replace all the screens, if money is no object. Replacing screens is one of the easiest home repairs, requires only a couple simple tools, basic skills and not much else. If cost is an issue, I would buy cheap sheer curtains, you can usually get panels for not more than $5-6. You should be able to make at least a couple screen covers out of each curtain panel. lay the screen down on top of the curtain panel, cut each cover slightly larger than the screen and use double face tape to secure to the inside edge of the screen and remount them.
  • Pam johnson Pam johnson on Jul 29, 2016
    pour vinegar down your sink,all my gnats dissapeared immediately
    • LibyLou LibyLou on Aug 15, 2023

      Pam- those are not the same gnats that live in houseplants. But the vinegar, boiling water, bleach, and drain cleaner will help with drain gnats.

  • Per4726902 Per4726902 on Jul 29, 2016
    A little dish of vinegar on your counter, and they will be gone within a day or two!
  • Mary Mary on Jul 29, 2016
    This is a cheap idea, and it still allows you to see out of the window. Take some Saran Wrap and cut it to the size of the screen... you may have to use several pieces. If the Saran Wrap doesn't stick to the outer part of the screen, then just tape it so it won't fall down. Saran Wrap and Tape is all you need!
    • Amy Amy on Mar 29, 2022

      Yeah but doesn’t that just defeat the purpose of a screen? Then they could just close the window.

  • We28518635 We28518635 on Jul 29, 2016
    Spray bug repellent on your screens ; yolu can also use vinegar to brush onto your screens the smell will go away after a short time. I would think the saran wrap would also stop the breeze .
  • Sophia,M.,McConnery Sophia,M.,McConnery on Jul 29, 2016
    The vinegar and soap solution is the best.Also if you have Tea Tree Oil mix it in a small spray bottle;6 drops to 750 ML of water and spray the screens.All bugs hate tea tree oil!
  • 183212 183212 on Jul 03, 2013
    Purchase a safe garden and fruit insect killer. Gnats and other insects are known to invade house plants and outdoor gardens. Yet, there's a simple solution. Visit the local home improvement store or general retail store and buy a fruit and vegetable insect killer. Spray the chemical on the house plants. Remove the top layer of the soil. Since gnats generally lay their eggs on the top layer of soil, take the house plants outside. Using a shovel, remove about one inch of the soil's top layer. If necessary, place new soil in the pot. Spray window sills and doors with an insect killer. Some gnats venture away from house plants and collect near windows and doors. Keep these areas sprayed with insect killer. This kills the adults, and prevents them from laying new eggs. Include a tablespoon of liquid dish washing soap with water. Before watering the house plants, mix in a tablespoon of soap. The soap helps get rid of annoying gnats, and it doesn't hurt the house plants. Use cider vinegar to attract gnats. Get a shallow bowl and pour about one cup of cider vinegar. Cover the bowl with a clear plastic cover, and cut a small hole in the middle. The cider vinegar attracts the gnats, and they become stuck inside the bowl. Empty the bowl as needed.
  • KJ KJ on Feb 08, 2015

    They are attracted to moisture and things that have an odor. I had this awful problem last summer and won the battle so don't be dishearten. I have two cockatoos so I cannot use chemicals in my home. So outside of laundry bleach, here is what I did to win back my home LOL. From my research, I found out that their resiliency, is fast turn around life cycle so this is not a quick overnight fix if you want to go chemical free. First, buy a gallon bottle of white viniger. The gnats are attracted to the smell. Every day, throughout my home, I placed extremely shallow bowls with viniger. They are smart, I guess, as a means of survival, so if the bowl is too deep (and I really didn't want want that much vinegar sloshing around) they will just stay at the top of the rim without going closer to the viniger and drowning. I also used packaging tape on my windowsills, sticky side up with a bowl of vinegar nearby to lure them in. I did use bleach in my drains at night before I went to bed because they are attracted to the water left in the drains and in the trap of the pipes (curved section of pipe under your sinks). But I CAUTION, I do not know what a safe solution is for someone on a septic tank so please do your research. You only pour this in your shower/bathtub and sink drains at night because water is standing still. Turnip is also correct about your plants. They will live in the top layer of your soil so you can either replace all of your soil or put your plants outside and let nature handle the issue. I know most states, indoor plants will not survive the great outdoors right now, so perhaps, you can replace your soil, and cover the plants with plastic bags at night like a mini hot house. I just think that until you get the gnats under control, your plants will be constantly reinvested. Also, make sure that you do not have standing water under your plants. Next, be careful to immediately throw out your coffee filter. They love the moisture and I guess the smell so that has to go right out to the trash. Also, keep all food off your counters. I bought a package of hot dog buns to use the next day, and in the morning, the gnats were inside the wrapper by the dozens....gross, but I did look at it, that I just caught a few dozen or more. Make sure to keep all beverages covered as well while drinking, otherwise, you will find a gnat floating. It took me about two months, when I started to notice that the size of the gnats were much smaller which meant that I impacted the life cycle and suddenly, the way they came, they were gone. As a side note, I was not the only one dealing with this pest last summer in the Los Angeles area and my sister had some trouble in the Orlando area. Good Luck!

  • Nancy Montabone Nancy Montabone on Feb 08, 2015
    Vinegar does indeed work well for us. I use a small mason jar, jam size, fill the jar about 3/4 the way full, poke about 10 holes in the lid of the jar (I use a hammer & nail) screw the lid on and place the jar or jars where you need them. Hope this helps!
  • Connie Mar Connie Mar on Feb 08, 2015
    If houseplants are a source, you can add a thin layer of sand to the top of the soil. I used that on one plant I re-potted using soil that had been in the garage for a while, and that took care of the little gnats.
  • Lettie Lettie on Feb 08, 2015
    When I was in Germany I discovered they do not use chemicals for pests. But if you have knats they put a bit of honey, a bit of vinegar and dish soap in a dish and set it near the knat problem in a couple days…no more problem...
  • Irene Fisher Irene Fisher on Feb 08, 2015
    Thanks for all your ideas, I too have been dealing with gnats this Winter, have done vinegar down the drain, helped some, also found out of I spray straight rubbing alcohol on them while in the sink they die. (I too have birds so I have to watch chemicals). Will try the vinegar, honey and soap thing, again thanks.
  • Karen boyd Karen boyd on Jun 10, 2015
    Check your potted plants!, if there is moisture in the soil they will (gnats) will lay their eggs in the soil, and those little buggers hatch EVERY day!
  • DORLIS DORLIS on Jun 11, 2015
    I forgot, this is the time of year for buffalo gnats to show up. Microscopic, can get through screens bite and leave welts on you. The best bet to keep them away from you and your pets is make a spray of 1 or 2 drops of real vanilla in a small spray bottle. Spray everything and they will stay away for a while. So, if you don't have fungus gnats, this could b e your problem.
  • Nancy Turner Nancy Turner on Jan 30, 2018

    You need to find out where they are coming from first. Are they in the kitchen? If you disturb the house plants soil, so you see them fly up? They are treated a little differently depending on where they are coming from. Plants need to be repotted with new soil and the pot cleaned. In the kitchen, do you have produce on the counter, or potatoes and onions in a cupboard that they could be coming from? You need an attractant like a small bowl of cider vinegar with a couple of drops of dish soap that will kill them, or purchase one from the store by the insect sprays, etc. Wash produce when you bring it into the house, especially if it is going to be on the counter. They usually come in with produce you buy or houseplants that you buy or bring in the house. They are on your window sill because they are going to the light coming in the window. If there are a lot, a fly strip would probably help.

    • BonDiva BonDiva on Jul 11, 2023

      Practical advice, always search for the source. New soil is best every year as so many things can infiltrate or contaminate potting soils. IF your container is cracked, ( even heavy crazing) break it up and toss it out as insects and fungus can infiltrate your growing conainers.

  • Ken Ken on Jan 30, 2018

    Best traps use sticky traps. You will catch the majority of them. Better than sprays.

  • Irene Marchionni Irene Marchionni on Jan 30, 2018

    You can try a thin coat of oil of peppermint.

  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Oct 19, 2016
    I have never heard of neon gnats,however try filling a few mason jars of 2tbsp cider vinegar to 1 tbsp of sugar with a quart of water and a few drops of dish soap. Cover with plastic wrap and secure with a rubber band .Poke some holes in the top. Place the jars throughout the house. The mixture will lure the gnats into the jars. Repeat as necessary until they are gone.
    • See 2 previous
    • Christina Christina on May 28, 2023

      I use a piece of tomato and a piece of banana peel in my jars. Same as you I cover the jars with Cling wrap and poke several tiny holes near the center. I use canning rings to hold the plastic wrap in place. I catch knats by the dozens everyday. I also pour boiling water down the drains daily.

  • Johnchip Johnchip on Oct 19, 2016
    Raid makes a liquid plug in I keep plugged in by my bed, works pretty well.
  • Jennifer Oaks Jennifer Oaks on Nov 06, 2016
    I have found success with using what I refer to as "Winegar". A mixture of NASTY wine. Usually the cheap $1.00 - $3.00 stuff, does the trick with a bit more pungent flavor.. some diced up fruit (not much) most flying creatins LOVE the fermented fruit. You could add a bit of vinegar to speed up the fermented process.. I use the bottle itself or if my banana's brought a crew of unwanted house guests, I spread the concoction out between a few different jars. Clean old jam jars work well, with a bit of saran wrap over them, rubberbanded down to stay. Snip a corner. This is to ensure they will be able to get in, but not find their way out. An they go the most joyful way, DEATH by DRUNKeness! Since gnat, fruit flies, flies, an fungus gnats just seem to pop up from no where, I keep a few of these out in the kitchen. Keeps population minimal.
  • 3po3 3po3 on Mar 08, 2012
    The key is cleaning up water and food. Thoroughly wipe down all your counters and kitchen surfaces with vinegar or bleach, and put away all food. Also make sure to avoid water around sink drains, etc. That might mean wiping out the sink after every use. There are also some simple home-remedy traps you can use to get rid of them: try a bowl of vinegar covered with plastic wrap. Poke holes in the wrap, and the gnats will fly in but can't get out. You'll wake up to a bowl full of gnats. Another option: put a few drops of dishwasher soap in water, and they won't be able to fly away. I have had a couple of gnat infestations, but two or three nights of vinegar traps have cleared up the problem.
  • Miriam Illions Miriam Illions on Mar 11, 2012
    This post offers some great info that may help you too:
  • Janice G Janice G on Mar 15, 2012
    I use an old remedy= A bowl of apple cider vinegar with a few drops of dishwashing detergent added. The gnats go for the vinegar, get trapped by the dishwashing fluid and drown.....
  • Rebecca Webb Rebecca Webb on Mar 16, 2015

    Set out cups of apple cider vinegar around the house. Some people suggest a drop of dish soap inside of it also in order to lose the surface tension of the cider, causing the gnats to sink.

    If there is something that is attracting them, then get rid of that. You can also set cups outside, but I am thinking if you don't get rid of whatever is attracting them, you're stuck.

  • KMS Woodworks KMS Woodworks on Oct 16, 2012
    can you remove a screen and place a small fan in the window blowing out? Run that for an hour and they should be sucked outside.
  • Angie CountryChicCottage Angie CountryChicCottage on Oct 16, 2012
    Apple cider vinegar in a jar or glass (about 1/2 cup). Add 2-3 drops of dishwashing liquid then 2-3 tbsps water (enough to make it start to foam). Add a piece of plastic wrap over the top secured with a rubber band. Poke holes in the plastic with a knife. They are attracted to the smell. They can get in holes but not smart enough to get out. Soap coats their wings and they drown.
  • BJ BJ on Sep 01, 2016
    In small jar pour 1/4 cup Apple cider vinegar. Tightly stretch cling wrap over the top stretch a rubberband to help hold it tight. Poke 3 or 4 small holes in top 1/4 inch or so with a knife. Gnats smell the vinegar and go in the hole to investigate and die. Non toxic to dogs or humans
  • Rusty Rusty on Mar 14, 2017

    I have always used a mixture of 50/50 water and rubbing alcohol on any bugs or spider nests on my plants and it has worked without hurting the plants.

  • Pat Allen Pat Allen on Dec 02, 2013
    *I make a soap/vinegar solution that kills them. First I pour about a half a cup of soap into a wide mouth jar/bowl/glass then I add about 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. Stir like crazy to get a super foam on the top. The gnats are attracted by the vinegar but captured by the soap bubbles. They DIE. My gnats came in with the bananas so now the bananas are stored in the frig. When the froth dies down, just stir like crazy again to rebuild the foam. Worls for me.
  • Pamela Pamela on Dec 06, 2013
    Thanks everyone for all of your help. What I did, first I sprayed all of the plants dirt with smart balance cooking spray (didn't have any Skin so Soft) then I placed a small bowl of the soap, vinegar out on my counter and I placed a lemon that was spoiled in a sandwich bag, leaving a small opening and I have had equal results, the bowl and sandwich bag had equal number of dead gnats in them, however the lemon was easier to deal with than a bowl of vinegar sitting on the counter. I have not seen a gnat for 2 days now. Yeah!!!! Thanks again everyone.
  • Karen Karen on Sep 18, 2017

    cut off top of plastic pop/juice bottle; put fruit juice and borax in bottle (just about 1/2 cup. Place top upside down (like a funnel), tape around it and the juice attracts the fruit flies

  • Tess Borgra Tess Borgra on Aug 28, 2013
    I saw and used a great simple idea. Get a small bottle, place some fruit in it and cover with plastic wrap and rubber band. Punch a couple of small holes in it. The gnats climb in and can't find way out.
    • Gen Gen on Aug 28, 2013
      @Tess Borgra, thank you. I think this is the same with apple cider vinegar in a bowl, cover it with plastic wrap and poke holes, which I caught so many already but still there's so many flying around. But I will also try your idea. Thanks, Tess!
  • Kimberly Lopez Kimberly Lopez on Aug 29, 2013
    put a piece of old banana at the bottom of the bowl. I usually make a cone out of paper like a funnel to the top of a glass with about 3 TBS of apple cider vinegar completely securing with tape. The cone has to have the smaller opening face down into glass. The hole in the cone must be small about the size of a pin head or a little lgr. They also hate Pine Sol. I add pine Sol to a sprayer bottle and go to town wherever they land. You can wash things down later. Bleach all your drains even bathrooms and toilets. Wipe all your cabinets down as well!
    • Gen Gen on Aug 29, 2013
      Thank you, Kimberly..this will also help. Haven't thought about putting banana in the bowl. I'll do that. thanks!
  • AvonelleRed AvonelleRed on Oct 10, 2014
    I use apple cider vinegar with a squirt of Dawn and a little sugar to attract them. I run a little water into the bowl to make some bubbles, and the gnats get caught up in the bubbles and eventually end up in the vinegar mix. It probably works just as well without the bubbles, but I just like to add them.
  • Douglas Hunt Douglas Hunt on Oct 11, 2014
    I'm not sure which post you are referring to, Shirely, but here are some on that topic:
  • Margie Spenser Margie Spenser on Sep 29, 2017

    Keep food in refrigerator. Wash any fruit or produce as soon as you bring it into the house to avoid importing flies, especially if you leave it out to ripen.

    Also, make fruit fly traps:

    Take large jars and put a couple inches of apple cider vinegar in the bottom.( wine is also good if you can spare it). The flies drink and drown, and you just pour them down the drain.

    My favorite is to put pieces of banana in the dry jar, then take a piece of paper ( half a sheet out of a school notebook) and make a cone out of it with a tiny hole at the tip. Tape the paper edge so the cone keeps its shape. Put the paper into the jar point down and fold the wide part of the cone down over the rim of the jar. Put a rubber band around the jar top or tape it. The fruit flies go in the little hole in the cone and can't figure out how to get out. This attracts more flies than the vinegar, but there are disadvantages. You have to drown the trapped flies by running water through the cone until the jar is full, then empty the jar down a big drain. The bananas get ugly. Also, the flies mate in the jar so you get more flies to drown, and you have to be careful they all drown before you remove the cone, then clean out and dry the jar.

    Raid flying insect spray works very well if you manage to hit the fly directly, but it's expensive and dangerous to inhale, and leaves goop on surfaces that you have to wash off completely. It is cheapest at Home Depot or Lowe's, not a supermarket. Every other spray I have tried wasn't worth a cent.

  • Joy30150932 Joy30150932 on Sep 29, 2017

    I have used dry yeast, sugar and warm water, place in a small bowl and then cover with plastic wrap. Put a hole in the top. This has worked good for me.

  • Deb walser Deb walser on Feb 04, 2017

    Let the plants dry out for about two weeks. Gnat life cylce is 10 days. Over watering will encourge eggs to hatch. A sticky trap will attract and capure aslo.

  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Feb 04, 2017

    You will have to repot the plants. Spray them down with an insecticidal soap.

  • No recipe . . . I just toss a little white vinegar down the drain every night after doing the dishes. Rubbing alcohol or hydrogen peroxide will work just as well, depending what you may have on hand. My girlfriend had no luck with all the various concoctions so she just set out a small bowl of Kahlua and that did the trick within a couple days.

    Many options here, just try and see what works best for you!

  • Andrea Andrea on Jan 09, 2022

    I know this is an old post, but I feel the need to spread this tip when I see this question asked because I battled with these little Devils for MONTHS and nothing anyone suggested worked. Until I found out about gnatrol. It contains the bacteria called bacillus thuringiensis israelensis, which kills fungus gnat larvae and mosquito larvae - nothing else! It's organic and safe for pets and humans. You can get small packages of it on eBay, and there's also another brand of it that goes by the name Bactive - Bactive contains 40% of the bacteria bacillus thuringiensis israelensis, whereas gnatrol contains around 37%.

    If you want to buy a 1/2 pound of it on eBay then Bactive is cheaper(but still more potent). If you only want a few ounces you'll have to get gnatrol brand because bactive only sells in 1/2 lb and 1lb increments.

    All you have to do is add a teaspoon to a gallon of water and water all of your plants with it once a week for 3 weeks to stop the life cycle from progressing, and you will be gnat free, I promise you!

    I now water with it once a month as a preventative, because I cannot make myself risk another gnat infestation after the one I had over a year ago 😂

    I buy the 1/2lb bag because that's lasted a year without going bad and I don't see myself needing more than that for a year.

  • Lamoismynamo Lamoismynamo on Jan 15, 2022

    I have gnats too. With nothing in the house to attract them. I finally got sick of using the fans 24/7 and took a little saucer plate and put it over my sink drain. I keep it on 24/7. Only Washing it every few days and the gnats seem to have gone away. Or they are still down the drain. But now they can't fly out ..if that is where they were coming from.

  • Chloe Crabtree Chloe Crabtree on Mar 22, 2022

    If you have only a few gnats in your home, you might be able to get away with eliminating them using a spray bottle. In a spray bottle, mix one cup of water, a tablespoon of vinegar and a bit of dish soap. Spray this mixture directly at the gnats whenever you see them fly by.

  • Sunnii Thomas Sunnii Thomas on Apr 01, 2022

    For inside we get these gnats as well i take a glass put a piece of banana in it and add vinegar just enough to cover the banana a bit. put a piece of saran rap on top and attach a rubber band. take a toothpick and poke holes in the top dont make holes too big. they go in for the banana but end up staying there as they cant get back out the hole . that works for me.

  • Our61604357 Our61604357 on Apr 06, 2022

    Pickle juice. Put in very small bowl,cup and set on kitchen counter. I buy 32 oz in liquor dept.

  • Mary Mary on Apr 23, 2022

    I had fungus gnats invade my home by way of a plant my granddaughter brought in. They migrated to my own plants. I had to repot my plants with ckean fresh soil, which i did outside and i rinsed the roots of each plant in case of clinging eggs. It only slowed them down. I kept all foods and fruits put away and i loade a spray bottle with 2parts vinegar to 1 part water and sprayed the little buggers everytime they gathered on my windows everyday. Took about a month and i had to clean them off my windows but they died on contact! Hope this helps. By the way dont spray them on your plants or plants will die.

  • Ded64150520 Ded64150520 on May 10, 2022

    The banana idea worked great for me. You have to use an exceptionally ripe, dark brown almost black, squishy banana. Mash it up and place some Saran wrap or some other similar covering over the top. Poke very tiny holes in it just big enough for the gnats to go in. The gnats will not get back out. You will find them dead in the bottom of your container with the mashed banana. Good luck!

  • Tropicdancer707 Tropicdancer707 on May 21, 2022

    There are so many great ideas here for killing & preventing gnats. I've found another natural tool to add to your arsenal for killing them in the air. Spray them with orange spray like Citrus Magic, which is 100% concentrated oranges. They drop like flies (or gnats). 😁 And then your house smells great. I think this is a good option to use once you've identified the source and addressed that issue, along with any of the other ideas for luring the rest of the little buggers to their doom with a bowl of fruit/vinegar/alcohol, etc. covered with Saran wrap with holes. Using this 3-pronged approach should eliminate the problem very quickly!

  • Mogie Mogie on May 21, 2022

    1. Eliminate the Source

    Clean up your kitchen, seal your drains, and replace your potting soil.

    • For fungus gnats: Fungus gnats live and breed in the soil of your potted indoor plants. Remove dead leaves on top of the soil. If you suspect mold or fungus, replace the pot liner, the soil, or both. If the root has rotted, consider replacing the plant altogether.
    • For fruit flies: Remove rotten or overripe fruit from the kitchen. Dispose of all organic foods outside. Tie the plastic bag tightly and properly close the trash bin to prevent gnats from getting attracted to the smell and breeding inside the trash can.
    • For phorid (drain) flies: If you see bugs in your kitchen that aren't fruit flies, they are likely phorid flies (or drain flies). These insects can only breed in moist areas, typically in drains or where there is leakage. Wipe down the outside of the pipes, fix any leaking pipes, fill and cover crevices and holes where moist dirt can get trapped, and keep your kitchen and bathroom dry.

    2. Kill the Babies (Larvae) and the Adults to Prevent Multiplying

    Search for their breeding ground in order to kill the larvae and stop the cycle of procreation.

    • For fungus gnats: The best method I've found is using a combination of steel wool and yellow sticky traps in my potted plants. I cover the top of the soil with coarse steel wool to shred emerging baby gnats flying out of the soil and adult gnats that fly into the soil to breed. I recommend getting medium coarseness or higher, and don't get the steel wool sponges because those have big holes that are easy for flies to get through. I also hang these Trapro Sticky Fly Traps on the plant to catch flying gnats loitering nearby. This combination ensures that I kill every single gnat possible.
    • For fruit flies: Fruit fly larvae live in fruits, so just dispose of infested fruits in your kitchen and refrigerator. Hang up those sticky fly traps to catch existing ones.
    • For phorid (drain) flies: Drain-fly larvae live in the sludge and film within your drain, but they may also breed inside the dirt that covers the outside of the pipes. Wipe down the outside with soap and water, and then do another wipe down with distilled white vinegar.

  • Diane Nusser Diane Nusser on Jun 13, 2022

    I live in the country and there are bugs everywhere. It has taken a while but I have found the BEST thing to control gnats is a "bug light". It attracts the bugs at night and the sticky pad catches. (It plugs into an outlet and stays lit) I have been AMAZED at how many I have caught on the pad. Well worth the investment. When I put one in the basement I was stunned at how many there were on the pad.

  • Igy Igy on Jun 18, 2022

    jars( glass works best)

    lemon juice

    dish soap

    red wine vinegar ( apple cider and regular vinegar work too)

    I know you any good answers here, but I use a mix with item that are most likely in your pantry… I don’t like pesticides that smell because of my asthma. Anyway I use this and it never has failed hands 🙌🏽 down!

    in a small bottle or jar I add 1/4 red wine vinegar, a dash of dish soap ( I use dawn , any is fine) and about 1good teaspoon lemon juice . Mix without softly but well and look later under the jar those little dark spots are the gnats ! Good luck

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Jun 29, 2022

    Try sprinkling Bio washing powder about!

  • MarthaJean MarthaJean on Jul 09, 2022

    Could try small saucer with A.PPLE CIDER VINEGAR. Good luck

  • Pinky Pinky on Jul 15, 2022

    I finally found the solution that actually works! Vinegar + soap +every other possible ingredient....= crap!

    MOSQUITO DUNKS. it will not kill the adults, but it still kill eggs and larva.

    Use 1/4-1/3 dunk and let soak in gallon of water overnight. Try to let your plants dry out between waterings, but use ONLY MOSQUITO DUNK WATER for minimum of 2 weeks and they will be gone forever!

    P.S. they arrived as eggs in the potting soil you purchased, or they were eggs or larva in the soil of the plants from the greenhouse. Greenhouses are notorious for them! If they arrived in the soil: it's because the soil stays damp in the bag, and it would have to completely dry out for them to be killed off.

    I now let my soil dry completely for 3 days before using it, use only "Dunkin' Water" for my indoor plants for the first week I have them, and "quarantine" (put them in a plastic bag dome for week to see if they have any gnats) all purchased plants before I let them out tobe with the others!

  • Suzanne Suzanne on Jul 15, 2022

    I've been told putting sweet wine or balsamic vinegar (it has to smell sweet) in a an empty soda bottle, screwing the cap on then poking holes in the bottle.. ultimately I guess it's supposed to be similar to a lobster or fish trap. They can fly in but they can't figure how to get out. So you may need to experiment with the size of the holes if it doesn't work the first time. Good luck .

  • Carey Carey on Aug 02, 2022

    Have you tried putting a Lil dawn dishsoap and water in a Mason Jar with seran wrap over it and poke holes in the seran wrap with a needle?

  • Naomi Naomi on Aug 05, 2022

    You have fungus gnats. Killing the gnats doesn’t work because they lay eggs in the soil. It is the larvae eating the plant roots that damages the plants. Use a dilute mixture of hydrogen peroxide and water (1/4-1/3 c HP And 3/4-2/3 c water), and water your plants with it. Do this once and the repeat once a week for a few weeks to kill new larvae as they emerge. Personally I use full strength without a problem but tender plants like fuchsia might not do well. Also, keep your plants dryer; fungus gnats love the damp, and when it’s cold and plants are not growing fast you need to water less often.

  • Bones Bones on Aug 10, 2022

    Sprinkle diatomaceous earth on the dry soil this will kill the eggs larvae and then also use yellow sticky traps for the adults you can spray the soil as well with a natural product like Lost Coast plant therapy or neem oil both which I found works really well.

  • Laurie Laurie on Aug 10, 2022

    I had them and nothing worked so I dug up the bushes that they were in. Then still gnats and there was no bush! I treated soil with “bug b gone”. It worked and I planted new bushes. No gnats

  • N3s69311942 N3s69311942 on Aug 20, 2022

    I use 1 tbsp of tea tree and peppermint oil on 1 quartz of distilled (not tap)water and 1cup of alcohol and 1/4 cup of hydrogen peroxide then spray cover the whole plants and soil let it stay for 24 hrs and no exposure to sun too you may repeat every week if it’s too bad it’s safe on all kinds of plants good luck

  • Lisa Holmes-Siders Lisa Holmes-Siders on Nov 10, 2022

    Once a week I put a cap full of hydrogen peroxide in my watering can it killed the gnats n puts air in the soil

  • Mogie Mogie on May 06, 2023

    Use a Bug Zapper

    Vinegar Traps

    Wine Traps

    Candle Traps

    Drain Cleaner

    Reduce Watering

    Use Sticky Paper or Cards

  • Kim Paxton Kim Paxton on May 07, 2023

    COCONUT OIL! It is not the smell that deters them but the fat in the coconut oil. You can spray it around door frames and windows to keep them from coming inside and it works for about a week. I have also sprayed the ground & timber around my flowers. It works wonders on skin and keeps all flying/biting pests away from you such as mosquitoes, gnats, deer flies and especially horse flies-as nothing before using the coconut oil seemed to deter these aggressive biters! Hope this helps & good luck!

    This article may help:,discomfort%20associated%20with%20insect%20bites.

  • Mogie Mogie on May 08, 2023

    If you notice gnats hovering around your kitchen sink or bathroom fixtures, consider thoroughly cleaning your drains to kill gnats that may be hiding within along with their egg deposits. To do this, clean your sinks with your usual cleaning solution, using a pipe brush in and around the drain. One simple way to remove gnats from your drain is to pour boiling water down the pipes once or twice a week until you no longer see gnats hovering around your pipes.

    Alternatively, combine half a cup of baking soda with one cup of white vinegar to create a foaming cleaning solution. Pour the solution down the drain quickly and leave overnight before flushing with boiling water then next morning.

  • Lennie Lennie on May 17, 2023

    Pour a cup or so of bleach down the all drains inside your home. I also got a small bug light zapper from Amazon {$30.00} and these 2 together really knocked em! Good Luck

  • Gog83887525 Gog83887525 on Jun 10, 2023

    Everything you've mentioned probably attracts more bugs. Don't use sugar, or any decomposing food to try to kill bugs. Maybe hire a professional for quarterly OUTDOOR insect repellant treatments. Don't treat for bugs inside the house. That stuff is toxic.

  • Have you tried a vinegar trap?

  • Michael Michael on Aug 02, 2023

    Eieiei!Hate em! I had great luck using water with hydrogen peroxide 4:1. Gave a good watering then sprayed the soil few times. Used on the foliage without a problem. After all the plants were treated it was only a few days till; sayonara. Good luck!

  • LibyLou LibyLou on Aug 15, 2023

    I had moved a plant indoors for the winter. The gnats had invaded the soil in that plant's pot and I didn't notice them until all my other indoor plants became infested too.Like a lot of you, I have tried many recommended ways of getting rid of them. The population may drop for a while, but seem to rebound quite rapidly. I found a cheep way to catch these little pest so they won't be bomb diving me as I sit and watch the TV. I put out several bowls or cups with water and Dawn dish soap, and for some reason the little pest are attracted to the mixture. It is amazing how many will drown in the stuff. I try to change the liquid every week or more often. I just flush them down the toilet. Bye,Bye..I'm also going to try another remedy. Purchase some Mosquito Bits. Make a tea using the bits and regular water. When your plants need to be watered use the tea mixture.I know the bigger mosquito dunks keep standing water in out outdoor plant water collection dishes insect free, so hoping the bits will do a good job inside.

  • Mogie Mogie on Sep 22, 2023

    1. Use a Bug Zapper. One of the most effective methods for controlling and getting rid of gnats is by using a bug zapper.
    2. Vinegar Traps.
    3. Wine Traps.
    4. Candle Traps.
    5. Drain Cleaner.
    6. Bleach Drains.
    7. Reduce Watering.
    8. Use Sticky Paper or Cards.

  • Tedd Reuschel Tedd Reuschel on Sep 22, 2023

    I have had good luck mixing 4 parts water with 1 part hydrogen peroxide. For it to work you need to let the soil in your plants dry out substantially and then water your plants with the water/peroxide mixture. The peroxide bubbles in the soil kill the gnat larvae and eggs. I’m not sure exactly what the chemistry is, but it is just creating oxygen and non-harmful vapors. I would just suggest that you treat all your plants so you don’t miss any of the eggs or larvae in the soil. Keep watering the plants with this mixture after the soil dries completely between watering for several watering cycles to make sure all of the adults, eggs, and larvae are eradicated. No chemicals required!

  • Jay Jay on Sep 30, 2023

    We bought a "Zevo" flying insect trap from Walmart. Worked wonderfully! It uses ultra-violet light and a sticky insert that the gnats can not resist. No mess, no fuss, no gnats or other flying insects.

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Sep 30, 2023

    Try Fly Spray!

  • Betsy Betsy on Oct 11, 2023

    Hi Gina: Make a mix of Apple Cider Vinegar and a bit of liquid dish soap. Mix gently and put into a spray bottle and spray your plants or wherever the gnats are. Or, you can make a mixture of half a cup of water, half a cup of isopropyl alcohol, and a teaspoon of dish liquid can be filled in a spray bottle. This mixture can be sprayed on the gnats directly to kill them.

  • Paul Paul on Nov 25, 2023

    Try nematodes. Order them online. They eat the fungus gnat larvae. You will be rid of all your fungus gnats. Google fungus gnat nematodes. I’ve tried way too many home concoctions. I’m surprised I have hair left on my head. lol. Mix with water, pour into the soil. The adults will still be around, but will die eventually. The larvae will be eaton up. When the larvae are all gone the nematodes die off.

    • Jennifer Jennifer on Mar 24, 2024

      Fungus gnats are caused by an over abundance of surface moisture

  • Buy sticky traps.

  • Jel17283245 Jel17283245 on Jan 06, 2024

    I cover my ripening fruit with a fine dish cloth. I also keep a spray bottle with 70% isopropyl alcohol (evaporates more slowly) to stun them and shoot then down, when they are in sight, then just wipe the little guys up (no sticky soap residue). The Alcohol spray is also a great cleaner for quartz countertops!

  • Ivan Ford Ivan Ford on Jan 18, 2024

    Fungus gnats can be a real plague if not battled early.

    My best weapon against them is to:

    Isolate the affected plant

    Place the potted plant in a bucket or container

    Fill with water up to the soil level

    Soon their larvae will appear from the soil to escape drowning. The adult gnats can easily be knocked into the water, where they will drown. Check regularly and knock any adult gnats in the water.

    After 3 days, your plant will be free of these critters.

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Jan 18, 2024

    Go buy the Ultimate Bug Killer and spray that on the plants!

  • Joe swaim Joe swaim on Feb 24, 2024

    Use the apple cider vinegar traps and Mosquito dunks or mosquito bits but most importantly start with the vacuum! Get all around & under the pots, plants & lights etc… you’ll be satisfied to get them in the vacuum & the vinegar & dunks will get the rest. You’ll be down to a couple & keep the vacuum close by. Use it every time you see a straggler. Sterilize new soil & plants before bringing them in your house. They’ll be gone rapidly.

  • Elaine Cree Elaine Cree on Mar 18, 2024

    To tackle fungus gnats use the nematode Steinernema feltiae, predatory mites or rove beetle larvae, and apply according to the pack instructions. I used nematodes for the first time last week, all the gnats are now gone!

  • Hi Gina! You can these steps:

    1. Trap Fruit Flies with Vinegar and Sugar.
    2. Use Produce That's Gone Bad.
    3. Battle Drain Flies with Bleach.
    4. Get Rid of Gnats with a Candle.
    5. Stock up on Sticky Traps.
    6. Maintain Low Humidity in your Home.
    7. Tend to the Trash.
    8. Avoid Overwatering Houseplants.

    Hope this helps!

  • Jennifer Jennifer on Mar 24, 2024

    I don’t know why people waste your time with these long, complicated explanations for a very simple common problem. First things first I’m an expert horticulturalist & FINE gardening professional.. all you need is neem oil. It comes in a spray. It comes in an oil form. You can make your own spray. It’s all natural and defends against most pests on flowers and plants is safe around people, children, and other organic growth it also doesn’t inhibit any of the plants natural processes. T

    Spray it on the soil around the plant and if possible, a quick mist of Noyle onto the plant green portions can help tremendously if not, eliminate either problem completely

  • Mignon Mignon on Apr 03, 2024

    Mosquito Bits have kept gnats away consistently for us & it's easy to purchase, prepare & apply. If you stay up on it you won't have to worry about gnats anymore! 😁

  • Redcatcec Redcatcec on Apr 03, 2024

    They are coming in on your fruits and veges, when conditions are right they hatch and fly around. To stop this, wash all fruit and veges and refrigerator. For bananas keep out of the refrig, but wash. Now the eggs are in your drain, add 1/3 cup baking soda and 1 cup plain white vinegar, when the fizzing stops rinse with hot water for a few min and then cover your drain.

    For the flying ones, take a sticky cardboard pad and open it up-the kind for mice. Put a piece of decaying fruit in the center of it. They will land on it and never be airborne again.

    For fungus gnats, use the method Ivan Ford suggested, it makes sense.

  • Anna Anna on Apr 11, 2024

    I had this problem and tried everything to get rid of them- nothing worked. Realised it was the peat free compost that was full of them. Re potted every house plant in peat enriched sterile soil and have had no fungus gnats since. Save the peat free soil/compost for outside planting only.

  • KLM KLM on Apr 29, 2024

    If you move a potted plant and gnats fly out of it you have fungus gnats. They are not the same as gnats that bother us outside so you’ll want to ignore recommendations referring to them. Never put food products in plant soil. Unfortunately, this is common bad internet information and has only made your fungus gnat infestation worse. The banana, oil, sugar, honey need to come out so I would recommend repotting everything with clean potting soil. When you repot, mix in “Mosquito Bits.”

  • Deb K Deb K on May 01, 2024

    Hello, hope this helps you. One method includes setting a bowl near the infestation and pouring apple cider vinegar, a teaspoon of sugar and a teaspoon of dish soap into the bowl. The sugar will attract the gnats, the dish soap will prevent them from escaping and the vinegar will kill them. Or, I bought a Venus fly trap and have not seen any little gnats or flies since. They work really well!

  • Tamie Tamie on May 01, 2024

    Let your plants dry out. It will kill the larva. You can try cinnamon as well. Don’t over water, which is hard to do if you get a lot of rain. The yellow sticky boards will take care of the adult ones.

  • Law105701263 Law105701263 on May 15, 2024

    Neem oil is an excellent insecticide if you don't like chemical products. Lowe's has it.