Giving water to our green friends is deeply ingrained in our care routine. Plants need water to transport substances, to stand tall and to grow and bloom. But there is also a disadvantage to giving too much water: a nutrient-rich soil in combination with too much water creates the ideal habitat for fungus flies, also known as the fungus gnat. In this blog you can read three tips for preventing & combating fungus flies.
Mourning flies are often found in moist environments. There is a reason for this, because the larvae of fungus flies feed on fungi and rotting plant material. The females lay their eggs in moist places.
The larvae grow into adult flies and begin mating within hours of emerging from the pupa. A female can lay 50 to 300 eggs in the potting soil the same day.
At ideal temperatures it takes 20 days to grow from egg to adult. This makes fungus flies a pest that requires regular treatment to get rid of them.
Plants in poor health or young cuttings are most susceptible to damage from fungus fly larvae. Especially when the larvae gnaw directly on the roots. Large, healthy plants often suffer no damage, but the adult fungus flies are more likely to be a nuisance to the plant owner. It can also feel somewhat unhygienic if you see a cloud of flies rising when you water. Finally, the adult fungus flies can transmit fungi to healthy plants. Reason enough to combat fungus flies, right?!
Below are three tips for preventing fungus flies:
- Make sure that excess water can drain easily into the pots of your plants. This prevents the soil from becoming too moist, which promotes root rot and attracts fungus flies. Use pots with drainage holes and avoid overwatering.
- Place sand, gravel or hydro granules on top of the soil to prevent fungus flies from laying eggs.
- Allow the top layer of soil to dry between waterings. This creates a less inviting surface for the mourning flies.
Are you still being attacked by mourning flies or are you currently suffering from this? Then kill two birds with one stone by using our combination deal against mourning flies.
A composition of nematodes & trapping cards are the most effective at breaking the life cycle of mourning flies. The nematodes supplied in powder form are dissolved in water and spread over the entire surface of the potting soil. The moment the nematodes come into contact with the fungus fly larvae, they become infected. This causes the larvae to die after 2-3 days. By using catch cards you catch the adult mourning flies so that no new eggs can be laid. A nice bonus is that our Sticky Leaf Green Mini catch cards are 100% recyclable in the paper bin!