Dre Campbell Farm
Natural Ways to Get Rid of Fruit Flies

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12 Natural Ways to Get Rid of Fruit Flies

Fermenting or ripened fruits and vegetables are mostly what fruit flies are attracted to. Moreover, they may fly around and even breed in containers like garbage bins and empty beer bottles inside your home.

These annoying pests can also transfer bacteria to your food [1]. As a result, it’s best to eliminate them before an infestation begins.

Here’s how to get rid of fruit flies naturally.

1. Paper Cone Trap

Fruit flies are tiny and generally have red eyes, so you can easily distinguish them from house flies.

They may suddenly appear when there are rotting fruits and veggies laying around. Additionally, they love fermented foods, so it’s very easy to bait and trap them.

Make an easy DIY fruit fly trap by rolling up some paper into a cone and fitting the narrow end inside a jar or bottle, leaving the wide part as the entry point.

A jam jar is ideal for this purpose, containing some ripening or rotting leftover. Additionally, to sweeten the deal, pour in some cider vinegar as bait.

Now, just wait for the flies to arrive. Once the pests are in the jar, the cone shape will make it hard for them to exit. They will eventually drown.

2. Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is a simple home remedy to catch fruit flies and kill them. ACV has a fruity aroma that draws the critters.

Fill small bowls or glasses with ACV and cover them with plastic wrap. Next, punch a few holes through the wrap to allow the flies to enter.

Once they drop in the vinegar there will be no way back out. Finally, wait for them to die then dispose of the contents in the container. This fruit fly trap with vinegar can also get rid of fungus gnats.

3. Discard Over-Ripe and Rotten Fruits

The scent of ripening or rotten vegetables and fruits will surely attract the critters from outside the house.

As a result, the best way to avoid this is to place all ripening produce into air-tight food containers and discard the spoiled ones.

4. Essential Oils

The top picks that deter these critters are oils of lavender, basil, eucalyptus, lemongrass, peppermint, and cloves, or even camphor if used with care.

Unlike the aroma of vinegar which attracts, the flies can’t stand the smell of these essential oils.

Saturate some cotton balls or scrunched-up paper towels and place them around the kitchen and near doors and windows. These will act as deterrents for them.

5. Liquid Soap Solution

This soapy mixture works great for getting rid of fruit flies. Add some dish soap to a bowl with some cider vinegar to make a killer solution.

The smell will attract the flies and the soap will cut the surface tension of the vinegar, causing them to drop in and drown.

6. Stale Beer

Use this homemade method as an alternative to other traps. The critters love stale beer and wine.

Therefore, beer bottles filled halfway can attract and prevent the pests from escaping via the narrow neck.

Mason jars can also work, punching holes in the cover. After flying around inside for a bit, it will be hard for them to find their way out.

7. Clean Up

Cleaning up the inside of your house and the outdoors is a good move.

  • Bins in the kitchen can be given an extra wipe down and stored in a cupboard or other covered area.
  • Keep trash cans away from the house.
  • Drains should be kept clean and treated with an anti-bacterial cleanser. Additionally, spray kitchen surfaces with a similar product.
  • Remove dirty food dishes and pans from sinks and surfaces as soon as possible.
  • Check any damp cloths used to clean surfaces or food and wash them.
  • Check for fruit-falls outside and dispose of any rotting away on the ground.

Daily checks on all areas likely to attract flies are also needed until the critters have disappeared.

8. Wash Produce Thoroughly

These pests can deposit bacteria on food items and surfaces, so ensure that you thoroughly wash foods and everything exposed. Sometimes produce brought in from the garden or greenhouse may also bring in unwanted critters.

Moreover, the female fruit fly can lay her eggs on the surface of softening fruits, so extra care is needed to keep your produce clean. Otherwise, throw out anything over-ripe.

9. Empty Garbage Can

Bins indoor and outside the home need to be emptied more frequently than usual to prevent all types of bad insects from infesting the house. Also, firmly close the tops and keep areas around them clean.

10. Clean Drain Areas

This is essential to keep all kinds of flies away. Cleaning out drains is an arduous task but necessary to avoid them becoming a desired breeding ground for the pests.

Use baking soda and salt or hot soapy liquid solutions to help eliminate odors that attract flies. Borax is also powerful and is even more effective when used with vinegar.

You can also purchase an environmentally friendly drain-cleaning agent such as EM-1 Septic Treatment.

11. Summerset Allguard

The critters start outdoors around fruit trees and bushes and in the vegetable patch.

Summerset Allguard can handle the problem. It is a commercial organic product containing concentrated solutions of garlic juice. This natural fruit fly spray also acts as a long-lasting deterrent to many other garden pests.

Diluted with water, use it on plants (crops), as well as ornamentals, and even lawn areas.

It is also rain-resistant so repeat applications are not necessary after every rainy day or heavy watering.

12. Fruit Fly Trap Kit

This product helps to control Cherry worms, Walnut Husk maggots, Apple Maggots, and Blueberry Maggots.

The product works as a lure and sticky trap that will catch adult flies. In so doing, it prevents them from laying eggs, thus avoiding the damage the maggots can cause.


Successful gardeners often have the pleasure of overproduction of crops. This happy situation can lead to produce left lying about on the ground or in the home — too much to consume.

These natural ways of controlling fruit fly infestations should help prevent the pests from lurking around.

Image via commons.wikimedia.org

Sasha Brown

Blogger and lover of all things natural.

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