Sunday, September 20, 2009

Curse These Fruit Flies!

We have had an ongoing fruit fly problem ever since I canned tomatoes about a month ago. A bunch came with the very ripe tomatoes that a friend's father in law brought me. In the weeks following, I have had a lot of produce from our garden, as well as the usual fresh fruit from the supermarket, passing through my kitchen. Yesterday I had reached my breaking point with the little buggers when I lifted Kennedy's head of cabbage from the counter and a whole swarm of them lifted into the air. I got online and looked for some extermination tips. I'm pleased to say that the simple remedy made from ingredients found in every kitchen is working like a charm.

So here's what you do:

Put a cup of apple cider vinegar in a cup/jar/bowl/bottle
Add a couple drops of dish soap.
Cover with plastic wrap (for good measure, it would work without, I think.)
Poke four or five holes in the plastic wrap.
Set it on the counter and watch those pesky little buggers die.

I couldn't believe how many fruit flies came hastily to the jar as I was getting this ready. Apparently apple cider vinegar is some sort of delicacy for them. The flies follow the sweet aroma through the holes in the plastic wrap. They try to alight on the liquid, but the dish soap has changed the surface tension so they fall in and drown. The plastic wrap helps keep the ones in there that enter but don't get sucked in. My kitchen was almost fruit fly free (say that 5 times fast!) by the end of the day, save the few that continue to hatch, I assume (yuck). (Did you know that a fruit fly lays 500 eggs in one sitting?!) I'll keep my little trap out until they are all gone.


Erin said...

thanks for the tip. i hate fruit flies too!

Jenn-Lee said...

I found something similar online except for one important thing : They forgot to mention the ol' soap part. Needless to say I always wondered why it didn't work. THANK you SO much for posting this so now I know for the future the right successful way. :)

merathon said...

i'm going to have to file this away for future use. the last time we had a fruit fly problem, the only thing i could think of was to not have any fresh produce on the counter for about 4 days. it worked, but yours is a much better alternative!

jessi said...

Thank you! I will be doing this asap! (Thanks to a bunch of bananas that spent a little too much time on the counter. Gross.)