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  #1  
Old 09/09/09, 08:39 PM
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Western PA
Posts: 150
Angry Onions, Potatoes and FRUIT FLIES--OH MY!!

Hi,

I am in need of help here. This is our first year gardening and we have had a great harvest of onions and potatoes. We are currently storing these in our cellar in crates for the most part. We also have 10 bags of onions hanging from the rafters. Within the past day or so... we have FRUIT FLIES EVERYWHERE? What did I do wrong in my storing of these veggies? How can I get rid of the Fruit flies without harming the veggies? Do I have to process all of these onions and potatoes now? Please help!!

TIA

Chris.

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  #2  
Old 09/09/09, 09:04 PM
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: N.W. Ontario
Posts: 708

I don't think you did anything wrong so much as it's just been such a horribly damp year here in the north that that the fruit flies are just BRUTAL.

Someone more experienced with bugs will probably have better advice ~ but ~ I would at least start with drying up the cellar somewhat. Fruit flies thrive in and breed in moisture. If you can get your hands on a dehumidifier, start with that.
As for fruit fly traps ~ a glass of fruit juice or wine (about an inch in the bottom) add a drop of soap to break the water tension. They really seem to like that.
Otherwise, the only way I could ever get rid of the little nasties was good old fashioned "Konk".

Good luck... I will be watching to read the pros advice!

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Old 09/09/09, 09:13 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Ohio
Posts: 17,028

Were the potatoes and onions dry before you stored them? Have you checked to make sure none are rotted? If the veggies were properly cured and none are rotted you have something else attracting the flies. To get rid of them you need sticky fly strips hung in the area and a wet/dry shop vac. Put a little water in the shop vac and suck up the flies as needed. My guess would be that you have some nasty potatoes and/or wet, squishy onions. You have to get rid of the nasty stuff before you can expect to eliminate the flies.

I have been battling them in my kitchen. Worked too much last week and got hit by some nasty virus this week. As a result the tomato peelings didn't get dumped like they should have. Clouds of flies were in the peels.

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Old 09/09/09, 09:31 PM
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 386

I read on HT recently about getting rid of fruit flies and I tried it and it really works :
Put some apple cider vinegar in a bowl, add a drop or two of dish detergent and set it on a counter or near where ever the fruit flies are (making sure to get rid of the nasty stuff first as stated by Danaus29) Come morning you can enjoy counting all those little bodies that have drowned in the bowl.

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Old 09/09/09, 09:38 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: SW PA
Posts: 757

Homemade dill pickle juice also works like a charm. I put about 2 inches of it in the bottom of a quart jar with a drop of dish soap. Overnight I had over a dozen dead fruit flies. I read the previous HT post, but did not have apple cider vinegar on hand...

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Old 09/10/09, 05:14 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Jeromesville, Ohio (northcentral)
Posts: 7,022

I agree with Danaus that you probably have some bad spots in your veggies. Check the necks of all the onions to see if any of them are squishy. Also, check the potatoes for rotten spots. There is not much that is stinkier than a rotting potato that has been left for a while.

The vinegar/apple juice/dish soap remedy does wonders for reducing the population of the little nasty flies.

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  #7  
Old 09/10/09, 06:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shellmar View Post
I read on HT recently about getting rid of fruit flies and I tried it and it really works :
Put some apple cider vinegar in a bowl, add a drop or two of dish detergent and set it on a counter or near where ever the fruit flies are (making sure to get rid of the nasty stuff first as stated by Danaus29) Come morning you can enjoy counting all those little bodies that have drowned in the bowl.
I use this method and it works!
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Old 09/10/09, 10:06 AM
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: NC
Posts: 1,352

Agree that something has spoiled. Do you have other foods stored in the area that might actually be the culprit? Did you spread your potatoes and onions after harvest to let them cure before putting them in the basement? If not, chances are you have onions and/or potatoes that are going bad.

Once the food source (decaying vegetable matter) is removed, the fruit flies will soon disappear. Using vingear, cider, and even some sweet beverages in traps, helps speed up the process.

Lee

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Old 09/10/09, 10:53 AM
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Location: michigan
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Yup,something is rotting somewhere.

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  #10  
Old 09/11/09, 01:16 PM
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 1,205
Quote:
I read on HT recently about getting rid of fruit flies and I tried it and it really works :
Put some apple cider vinegar in a bowl, add a drop or two of dish detergent and set it on a counter or near where ever the fruit flies are (making sure to get rid of the nasty stuff first as stated by Danaus29) Come morning you can enjoy counting all those little bodies that have drowned in the bowl
This really does work! Unfortunately, after getting about 400 a day for a week with this method and them still being so thick it looked like my kitchen was crawling, I caved and sprayed with chemicals. There were still a few flying around so I'm still doing the apple cider vinegar bowl every day and getting about 100 a day.

Someone said they may be coming in through the sink drains.
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