Winter is coming and many of us want to bring our plants in but keep the pests out. There is one specific pest that almost everyone will encounter at some point and that is the fungus gnat.
Fungus gnats won’t damage your plants, but instead use them as a breeding ground. They look like tiny mosquitos and can multiply by the hundreds and while they can’t harm you, they can definitely kill your vibe.
Here are our top 3 tips to prevent and get rid of fungus gnats.
Don’t Overwater Your Plants
Fungus gnats thrive in moist-to-wet potting media, whether it is a potting mix or soil. When these conditions are present, the top layer of soil is where fungus gnats will come in and lay their eggs. Their larvae will then feed off of your plants roots but cause little-to-no damage. Then when they become adults, they will start buzzing around your plants and your home & repeat the cycle.
How can this be avoided? Let your soil or potting mix dry out before watering. Most plants will be happy and not need to be watered until the top inch of their potting media is dry. Another way to avoid overly moist soil is to bottom water.
Do Create a (Decorative) Barrier
Decorative stones, pebbles, or pea gravel is a staple in outdoor gardening and can serve to be fashionable and functional for your indoor plants as well. Rock toppers provide a clean aesthetic and can help your foliage pop while adding a later of protection between fungus gnats and your potting media.
However, it’s important to note that this will act like mulch and help your potting media retain moisture. This will help reduce how often you water your plants and works well with bottom watering. It is important not to add any toppers if fungus gnats are already present. Our Rock Your World Collection comes in three different colors to help your plants stand out & is also infused with essential oils to help deter pests.
Always Use the Right Potting Mix
Not all potting media are created equal. Bagged soil is often too dense for most houseplants. Density comes from a lack of added material like perlite to help water properly drain through the containers we keep our plants in. Improper draining leads to wet or muddy conditions that not only invite fungus gnats in, but also lead to root rot.
Houseplant potting mixes like IvyMay Redwoods Houseplant & Aroid Potting Mix are crafted to create a perfect balance between moisture retention and drainage. Infused essential oils such as peppermint and cinnamon also discourages fungus gnats from making themselves at home and encourages healthy root development and growth.
So, as the weather gets cooler and the days get shorter, your plants will soon go dormant. However, that doesn’t mean pests are too! Be sure to try one or all of our tips to help keep fungus gnats out while your plants inside.