If you love houseplants, chances are you’ve had to deal with the annoyance of fungus gnats, also known as soil gnats. These small, dark-colored flying insects, which look similar to fruit flies, live in the soil of your indoor plants, with their larvae feeding on plant roots and fungi. The adult gnats make their irksome presence known when you water your plants or disturb the soil somehow.
Fungus gnats are attracted to the moist potting soil and decaying plant matter at the base of indoor plants. Their larvae may have been present when you acquired the plant at a store or nursery, so they weren’t visible until you got the plant home, at which time the larvae hatched into the adults. Infestation can also occur if your houseplant was outside for a period of time.
Fungus gnats don’t bite and usually don’t cause harm to mature, healthy plants. However, in young seedlings and fragile plants, they can cause yellowing, stunted growth or even death.
Wondering how to get rid of gnats in the house, which buzz exasperatingly around you and your plants? Even though your first instinct might be to grab the bug spray, this is a limited solution because more gnats will simply hatch from the larvae in the soil.
More effective measures to rid your home and plants of fungus gnats involve targeting the larvae. Consider these simple ways to say goodbye to pesky gnats for good:
To prevent future gnat infestations, water your plants from the bottom so that the top layer of soil stays relatively dry.
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