The weather is warming up, and the patio is luring you outdoors. What better time to call the family and friends together and get outside for an outdoor grill? There is only one thing spoiling the idea. Flies. They buzz around your face and land on your food, forcing you to swish them away repeatedly with your hands. Here, you’ll find out how to get rid of flies on the patio!
Why Are There So Many Flies Outside My House?
Flies are active from spring through fall, with their peak activity during summer. Female flies generally lay more than 100 eggs after mating, and those eggs spawn into larvae in less than 8 hours if the weather is warm enough. Adult flies have a maximum life cycle of 3 months.
If you have a fly problem, you need to look for the breeding source. Find and remove what is attracting them to your home, both indoors and out. House flies are attracted to garbage and organic waste matter. They land on those things and then contaminate everything else they land on. So, get rid of the reason they’re hanging around, and you’ll know how to get rid of flies from your home.
Why Is It Important To Get Rid of Flies?
Flies are dirty, restless insects, zipping from here to there landing on walls, your skin, your dog’s poop, and the trash. Flies help increase the spread of disease and infection. Flies can cause typhoid and paratyphoid fevers, spread diseases like diarrhea and dysentery, cholera, and conjunctivitis. They can carry salmonella, anthrax, and tuberculosis. Flies are also known to transmit the eggs of parasitic worms. Ready to get rid of flies? Let’s explore how to get rid of flies.
How To Get Rid Of Flies
Getting rid of flies starts with cleaning. Wash walls, floors, and ground with a borax and water solution remove the trace that flies leave to attract other flies. Keep trash cans covered and remove the trash at least twice a week. Make sure there are no food scraps left lying around the house.
- Plant basil around your home for a natural fly repellent.
- Spray essential oils around your home to get rid of flies. Flies hate the scent of them, particularly lavender, peppermint, lemongrass, and eucalyptus.
- The smell of cinnamon will repel flies outside and inside.
- Keep a fly swatter handy to keep them away.
Set vinegar fly traps to get rid of flies. Pour one inch of liquid dish soap into a jar and add one inch of water. Use fruit-scented dish soap for best results. Add two to four drops of apple cider vinegar. The fragrance of cider vinegar will attract flies. Flies will then drown in the soapy water.
Plant carnivorous plants like Venus Flytrap or Sundew. They provide a clean way to get rid of flies. The plants are very attractive to look at as they steadily do their job of attacking, trapping, and digesting flies. You can’t get much more natural fly traps than that.
How Do You Get Rid Of Flies Outside?
You can get rid of flies outside with these six easy steps:
- Plug in an oscillating fan on an extension cord on your backyard patio. Flies can’t fly very well, so the fan’s stiff breeze will make sure you get rid of flies outside.
- Make natural fly traps by dissolving a quarter of a cup of sugar in one cup of water in a jar per trap. Create a cone by rolling a stiff piece of paper. Make sure it is long enough to reach from the top of your jar to just above the level of the liquid. Snip off the tip. Tape the cone inside the jar with the wide end filling the jar’s mouth. These natural fly traps will funnel flies right into the jars, and you will get rid of flies.
- Light a citronella candle for a very easy, natural fly repellent. Citronella is a highly aromatic oil distilled from several varieties of lemongrass and repels both flies and mosquitoes. Light a few of these candles and set them around your picnic table and along the patio. The strong scent will tell those pesky flies they’re not welcome.
- If you prefer something immediate, effective, and strangely satisfying, you can always swat flies. Grab an electric device for when your arm gets tired. It will electrocute the flies with a loud zap. Both methods will get rid of the flies.
- For some reason, flies hate the smell of vodka. Get your hands on some cheap vodka and half fill a few small plastic sandwich bags. Zip the bags most of the way shut and use twine or string and some heavy-duty clothespins. Hang the bags around your yard to get rid of flies outside.
- Create your own fly strips instead of buying commercial ones to keep flies away. Use essential oils because flies hate them. Cut a piece of cloth into 12 inches long by 1 inch wide strips. Moisten the strips with several drops of your essential oil. Good choices include clove, lavender, lemongrass, citronella, eucalyptus, rosemary, basil, or mint. Tie the strips on branches and railings around your patio and let the scent of the oil get rid of the flies outside.
What Smells Do Flies Hate?
For some reason, flies hate the smell of certain products, which makes them ideal for use in homemade fly repellents.
1. Vodka and Essential Oils
Mix one cup of vodka, two teaspoons of aloe vera juice, one teaspoon of lemon eucalyptus oil, half a teaspoon of essential oil blend. Pour the mixture into a spray bottle. Spray the infested area to repel flies outside.
Pros: No chemicals, easy to use, works great.
Cons: People with sensitive skin may get skin irritation after using it.
2. Lemongrass Oil
Combine 20 to 25 drops of lemongrass essential oil with half a cup of hot water in a spray bottle and spray along doorways, windows, and any infested areas of your home and outdoor areas to repel flies and prevent flies from taking over your living spaces.
Pros: No chemicals, keeps home smelling fresh.
Cons: Essential oils can be a bit expensive.
3. Cloves and Citrus
Push 6 to 12 cloves into halved lemons or apples and keep them on a plate as a centerpiece on the table, especially at outdoor mealtimes. You could also use clove oil.
Pros: No chemicals, easy to make/use, doubles as an attractive centerpiece.
Cons: Only effective against houseflies.
4. Vinegar and Witch Hazel
Add a quarter of a cup of apple cider vinegar, a quarter of a cup of witch hazel, and 30 to 60 drops of eucalyptus oil in a spray bottle and shake well.
Pros: No chemicals, works great, can be used as a fly repellent body lotion.
Cons: Only effective against house flies, may cause irritation if it enters eyes.
5. Fly-Repelling Herbs
Plant some herbs like basil, Elder, lavender. Tansy, wormwood, rue, and mint in pots near doorways for another natural fly repellent.
Pros: Effective fly repellent, purifies oxygen, keeps home refreshingly aromatic.
Cons: Environmental conditions may not favor the growth of certain herbs.
Citronella and camphor are both good at repelling flies. In general, flies hate smoke, so add a citronella candle or camphor and spread the smoke in fly-infected areas.
Pros: No chemicals, works against all species of fly.
Cons: Produces smoke, which may aggravate breathing disorders.
7. Malt Vinegar
When boiled, malt vinegar gives out an incense that flies cannot tolerate. Take a pot with a thick base and pour some malt vinegar inside. Start heating the pot until the malt vinegar starts to boil, then turn off the heat and keep the pan in the fly-infested areas.
How To Keep Flies Away
Getting rid of these pests is not enough. You want to keep flies out of your home. Once rid of them, discourage the re-entry of flies and maggots with these smart strategies for how to get rid of fly infestations.
- Keep things clean. Flies love open trash cans, uncovered compost bins, and dog droppings. Tidy up after outdoor parties, remove all food scraps, and keep a tight lid on trash cans and compost. If the family pooch does his business in the yard, clean up after him immediately.
- Unless webs stretch across an area you’ll walk through or reach into, leave spiders be. Hungry arachnids will devour any flies they can snare.
- Plant fly-repelling herbs in your home and around the outside of your house. Surround your patio and barbecue area with potted herbs that repel flies. Basil, lavender, mint are excellent choices for getting rid of flies.
- Watch out for water. Don’t leave pools of water to sit stagnant around your house and yard. Flies need to drink water and are drawn to puddles, birdbaths, and soggy patches caused by dripping sprinklers. Getting rid of these sources of water is one way you can get rid of flies.
- Clean fruit bird feeders. Everyone enjoys watching birds feed on fruit, but flies are bound to crash the party. Get rid of flies by tossing rinds as soon as your feathered friends have finished nibbling on them.
- Mow your lawn regularly. Flies often lay eggs in long grass, which offers them moisture and protection. If you mow your lawn weekly during the peak summer season, you’ll prevent flies from infesting your yard.
Keeping flies at bay may seem like a difficult task at first, but with the right plants, deterrents, and cleanliness, you’ll fix your fly problem in no time.