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How to get rid of gnats in the kitchen

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Discover how to get rid of gnats in the kitchen.

Our 100% natural and ecological tips and tricks to keep midges away

In summer, it’s hard not to see undesirables in the kitchen when you leave your windows open. Can’t stand the gnats swirling around your fruit basket, trash can, or plants inside your house anymore? Here are ecological and easy-to-implement solutions to get rid of these insects once and for all! How to get rid of gnats in the kitchen How to get rid of gnats in the kitchen

Tip n°1: create a gnat trap

To get rid of midges quickly and effectively, make a homemade insect trap! To do this :

  • Get a glass jar with a lid.
  • Poke a few holes in the cover with a screwdriver or knife.
  • Pour some apple cider vinegar at the bottom of the jar and wait.

The gnats, very attracted by the smell of vinegar, will go into the container and get stuck there. To maximize the effect of this trick, you can also add lemon to your vinegar: you will have a chance of trapping even more insects! Red wine, syrup, or washing-up liquid can also be used for this 100% natural trick. 

Another solution: you can create a trap with an empty bottle. Place the uncorked bottle in a strategic place (work plan for example) and pour in something to attract gnats.

Besides apple cider vinegar, red wine, or lemon, you can also use beer or small pieces of meat. The gnats will get stuck inside the bottle. All you have to do is change the bottle when the trap no longer works. 

Tip n°2: eradicate gnats from your pipes

If gnats have taken up residence in your drains, an old-fashioned trick to get rid of them is to pour coffee grounds down your kitchen sink.

Then run very hot water. Unfortunately for them, it will be impossible for them to return to the surface, while your pipes will be cleaned at the same time. You can also use two green household classics: baking soda and white vinegar, which are just as effective! 

Clean, gnat-free drains, what more could you ask for?

Tip n°3: put a cork in a fruit basket to keep midges away

It may seem unlikely, but cork repels midges because they have a sensitive sense of smell and can’t stand the smell.

To get rid of gnats in a kitchen, place a wine cork cut in half in your fruit basket. The icing on the cake: it will also prevent them from rotting at the same time. 

Another natural solution to avoid an invasion of midges in your fruit: place cloves of garlic in the middle of the basket. Midges do not appreciate their strong smell. 

Something else to know about the fruit basket

There are certain rules to follow to keep your fruit basket in good condition, which will prevent the arrival of mold and therefore midges.

Indeed, even once harvested, some fruits continue to ripen. These are climacteric fruits. These fruits give off ethylene which promotes the ripening of the surrounding fruits. Climacteric fruits that should not be mixed with other fruits are:

  • Bananas
  • kiwi fruit
  • Peaches
  • Tomatoes
  • Figs
  • Pears

There are also fruits insensitive to ethylene given off by these special fruits. It is :

  • The watermelon
  • The strawberry
  • citrus fruits
  • pineapple
  • The grape

You can therefore mix them with others in a fruit basket without fearing the arrival of gnats.

Tip n°4: draw the black soap

Gnats have taken up residence in your green plants? No worries, there’s black soap to scare away undesirables! Here is the recipe: 

  • Start by diluting a tablespoon of black soap in a liter of warm water
  • Add a teaspoon of baking soda to the mixture
  • Mix well, pour the liquid into a spray bottle, and spray your plants to rid them of gnats!

This trick will also allow you to fight against potential aphids.

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If your aromatic plants are in poor condition ( basil, mint, parsley …), this will attract gnats. Do not hesitate to get rid of them before they rot. 

Tip 5: create a repellent spray with eucalyptus

Here is a repellent recipe that will allow you to drive away midges from your kitchen while having a good smell in the house! In 5 liters of water, drop 150g of fresh eucalyptus leaves. Boil everything for 15 minutes, before letting the mixture stand to cool. 

Once the mixture has cooled, strain the decoction and pour it into a spray-type bottle. Spray this solution several times a day to eliminate midges. Eucalyptus is indeed one of the plants that naturally repel gnats. 

Tip 6: use essential oils

Taken from certain plants that are naturally repellent to gnats, essential oils can be widely used in the fight against invading gnats in your kitchen! 

Geranium essential oil

If you want to fight gnats naturally while decorating your windows and balconies, geranium is your best ally.

In essential oil, it is used diluted in a neutral dispersant with 100ml of water. Count 8 drops of essential oil for this amount of water. This is a great repellent to spray as soon as the gnats appear! 

Peppermint essential oil

Used in diffusion (in a suitable device), peppermint essential oil is an excellent repellent. Its strong odor is indeed little appreciated by midges! 

Tea tree, lemongrass, or lavender essential oil

Cut small pieces of sponge (dishwasher type) on which a few drops of one of these essential oils are placed. Then drop the pieces all over your kitchen or even around the trash can. 

Lavender essential oil

Here is another natural repellent recipe, to prepare yourself with lavender essential oil. In a spray bottle, prepare a mixture of 1/4 white alcohol vinegar, 1/2 liter of water, and 10 drops of lavender essential oil. 

Also read: How to get rid of fruit flies

Tip 7: Lemon and clove

To keep midges away from your worktop, you can make a natural repellent based on lemon and clove.

  • Cut a fresh lemon in half
  • Plant cloves inside the flesh of the lemon
  • Put the two pieces of lemon in two distant places in your kitchen (to distribute the smell)

This will scare away midges that don’t like the combination of these two smells. Don’t forget to open the window (this is a general tip) to allow those little buggers to leave.

Our advice to avoid midges

Since prevention is better than cure, the best way to get rid of gnats is to prevent them from settling in your home! Here are some good tips to prevent insect invasions of all kinds during the summer: 

Put the food in the fridge. To avoid attracting mosquitoes, the first rule to follow is not to leave food on your work surface: remember to keep cheeses and other fruits and vegetables in the refrigerator. Also, protect your leftovers with cling film. 

Store groceries in jars. The advice will also be useful for cockroaches and food moths: store all your food in airtight glass jars so that they do not attract any insects! And in addition, like that, your cupboards will be super tidy! 

Do not leave a bottle of wine open! Yes, as strange as it sounds, gnats love the smell of wine. If you have an opened bottle in your kitchen, remember to close it well with the original cap or a glass stopper. Some wines such as white wine or rosé can also be stored in the fridge after opening. 

Don’t leave dirty dishes lying around!  Whether in the sink, on the worktop, or elsewhere, don’t leave dirty dishes lying around in the summer, and make a habit of doing the dishes systematically at the end of the meal. In addition, it will make you less mental load.

Don’t forget to clean out your trash can.  Black soap or baking soda, choose your side! But don’t forget to clean your trash can regularly so that odors don’t attract gnats. Midges do not hesitate to come and lay their eggs there. Also choose a trash can with a lid, to limit the risk of infestation. You can also regularly disinfect the trash can with ammonia. 

Avoid having stagnant water in your kitchen. Cat’s or dog’s bowl, sink with a bottom of the water, a glass of water lying around… These are just as many places appreciated by gnats to reproduce!

Get rid of plants in poor condition. Parsley, mint, coriander, basil… if your aromatic plants are faded, shriveled or on the verge of putrefaction, this will inevitably attract gnats and other insects. Anyway, it’s too late to hope to cook something good with a dead plant so throw it away.

Finally, if the season is right, turn on your fan! The draft will drive them away from the house. Otherwise, simply ventilate your house because midges are attracted to the interior heat of your home.

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