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What are Fungus Gnats?

If you see small black flies at the top of your potting mix flying or walking around, then your plants might be infested by fungus gnats or scairid flies and how to get rid of fruit flies. These mosquito-like insects has become an increasing problem over the last 30 years. They love warm, organic environment; and this environment is readily supplied by the increased use of organic media and How To Get Rid Of Gnats.

fungus gnats

These flies can be found everywhere but often come into an area in bags of coco coir or potting mix for how to get rid of fruit flies. They are winged creatures with a slender and darkly colored body; and segmented legs and antennae. Some females, however, are wingless. They lay their eggs in the medium and these eggs hatch out into little larvae which are between 4-6 millimeters. The translucent, worm-like larvae with a black head capsule, growing in the medium of plants are the ones that cause damage because they feed mainly on growing root tips, damaging and forcing the plants to grow new roots which would require them to use more energy. This energy could be used by the plants for growing for their framework. Also, they are laying out sites of entry for disease-causing organisms such as pythium.

Their life cycle is from egg to egg laying adult, which can take about 14-25 days. Each female fly can lay between 1 and 300 eggs then how to get rid of gnats.

During the vegetative stage, the plant tends to be able to cope with a lot of these damages, but it is in the flaring stage that most plants would start to deteriorate.   This is because of the fact that in the vegetative stage, the plants can still replace their roots, but during the flaring stage, they stop growing new roots.

They do replace some roots but generally the number of larvae is built up to a point where the plants can’t cope with them. These pests do not only deprive these flaring plants of nutrient and water, but they also cause diseases. Eventually, the plants become more diseased, they deteriorate further and they can die.
Fortunately, it can be treated but prevention is better than cure. It is better to start the treatment before you could even see the flies.

Allowing the growing medium to dry between watering is the most effective and easy strategy to minimize fungus gnats. The dry medium will decrease the survival of eggs and reduce the attractiveness of the growing medium to egg-laying adult females. You could also consider repotting or applying insecticides if necessary in Fruit Flies.


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