Sunday, May 22, 2011

War with Fruit Flies

So, I don't know how they got here, but we were really struggling with fruit flies a while back. It was driving my husband nuts, and I was getting frustrated because I really didn't want to do the dishes. We didn't have a fruit bowl or obvious area they were attracted to. They seemed to like the sink.

We have a friend that has a crazy cooking habit, and composts all her kitchen trash, and she has an ongoing fruit fly problem, but it doesn't seem to bother her really.

She always has a trap or two to catch them with, so I knew how to make one with a paper funnel and a piece of tape around a container from the recycling bin. I wasn't very satisfied with the results. I found another design online that uses the top portion of a bottle instead of a paper cone.

Then I ruthlessly cleared the counters and put all the food, every thing, in the fridge. I washed the cabinet we keep potatoes in and tried to keep up with the dishes. Then they were in the bathroom, crawling on the toothbrushes! It had gone too far. I'd put down my glass of red wine and when I picked it up for another drink, there would be a fly or two on the rim. GROSS!

So I declared war. I made a delicious trap- a strawberry top and a piece of banana peel in a little crock, with a paper cone, in each of the bathrooms. Then I made a packing tape bomb with a little piece of banana peel on it. My idea was that they would come in for a snack and get glued to the tape, like fly paper. No. Didn't work. I got excited one morning and saw a bunch of them on my tape trap and I tapped it. They all flew off!! I was so mad. When you try to smash them or clap your hands over them, it seems futile, and I rarely get one that way. But when I saw that cloud of them come off the banana peel, I got an idea.

I had been washing dishes earlier when I saw a fruit fly go by. I snatched at it with my soapy hand - and caught it! The bubbles made all the difference. So I ran upstairs to the bathroom tape-trap, soaped up my hands, and then tapped the tape. I CAUGHT ALL OF THEM when I cupped my soapy hands around the trap. This also worked when the stupid things would collect on the paper rim of the trap and not go in.

So, there you have it. A long yet triumphant tale of the war with fruit flies. I wish you skill and speed with your soapy hands in your own battles.

We're so pleased you are reading Farming Salt & Light! Choose how you live!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Fruit fly nectar: maybe two teaspoons red wine vinegar, 1 teaspoon sugar, in a glass. Cover the top with plastic wrap. Poke some tiny holes with a toothpick. Leave it out. Experiment with other vinegars when sometime the sludge of dead flies is too disgusting to leave in the kitchen, and you have to wash and replace the "nectar".