insects and houseplants

gingerobyn gingerobyn at
Thu Jun 5 21:32:28 EST 2003

thank you so much! i will try your suggestions. i'll also look for the other
newsgroup. thanks again. ginger
"Beverly Erlebacher" <bae at> wrote in message
news:2003Jun5.121402.7748 at
> In article <8lzDa.35233$ca5.8750 at>,
> gingerobyn <gingerobyn at> wrote:
> >i don't seem many current on topic posts, so i dont know if anyone is out
> >there to answer questions, but i hope so!
> Questions like these are best posted in rec.gardens.
> >i dont know much about plants, but
> >love them so my apartment is adorned with some. in the spring and summer
> >time they end up having these little black insects flying around them and
> >around my apartment. i have ended up getting rid of some plants when i
> >the tiny little winged bugs crawling around in the soil in numerous
> >but i dont want to do that. i tried spraying them with soapy water and i
> >also tried spraying them with a store bought spray to eliminate insects.
> >neither worked. i was free of them for a few months after i dumped the
> >where they were most prolific, but now the bugs are back and i dont know
> >what to do about them. they don't appear to harm my plants but they are
> >annoying and they end up multiplying. if anyone has any idea what to do
> >about them please let me know. thanks!     -ginger
> They are fungus gnats.  The larvae live on organic matter in the soil.
> You can discourage them by letting the soil dry out between waterings,
> especially the top cm or two of soil.  It may help to put a layer of
> sand about that thick on top.  The idea here is to make the pots
> unattractive to females that want to lay eggs there.
> To get rid of adults, you can use the yellow sticky traps sold to
> control white flies.  They work even better for fungus gnats, in my
> experience.
> You can buy several pesticides targeted for fungus gnats, but I've
> found the above measures are quite effective.  Although they can cause
> damage to plants under some circumstances, I've always found these
> gnats to be harmless, but they can be a nuisance - especially for
> roommates, spouses and coworkers who are less fond of plants than you
> are.
> Also - if you get a sudden big outbreak, check your plants for dead
> flower bulbs, rotting roots, etc.  Fungus gnats can convert these
> things into more fungus gnats at an amazing rate.

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