How To Kill Fruit Flies

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This guest-post comes to us from Jennifer Ferro, KCRW’s General Manager. 

Summer means fragrant, juicy and ripe strawberries, apricots, peaches and nectarines.

It also means fruit flies.

Some years the fruit fly situation in my kitchen is so bad I need a beekeepers outfit just to get to the fridge. The only way to take back your kitchen is to kill the little suckers completely and totally. But how?

First, you need to have a scorched-earth policy.  Your pledge: No flies left undead.

First, put away all fruit. That means taking all your fruit out of any bags. Wash it off and dry it.  Then, put it into the refrigerator (gasp!).   I am normally against refrigerating flavorful fruit. It tends to be harmful to the taste and texture. But we all have to make sacrifices at times like this.

Next, clean off all surfaces that held the fruit. Wash all bowls and dry them, clean off countertops.  Throw out your kitchen trash, clean out your kitchen sink trap, dump out your compost scraps.

Finally, set your trap.  This is the easiest thing to make and it is extremely effective. You’ll need a small, narrow-mouthed bowl or jar, plastic wrap, one chop stick and soy sauce.  Here’s my most recent trap. It’s just a small Pyrex glass ramekin.

Fill your narrow-mouthed vessel with approximately an inch of soy sauce. (Traps can also hold a banana peel or red wine but I can smell those things rotting in my kitchen.) Next, tighten plastic wrap over the top.  Poke about 10 holes in the plastic wrap with the tip of the chop stick.

Set the traps on the counter and be ready to watch those annoying flies die.  If there are no flies in your trap after a day try widening the holes. It seems counterintuitive but it works.

Good luck in your killing spree!