Fantastic Fruit Fly Finisher

August 10, 2012 | My Jottings

All summer long we haven’t seen a fruit fly, until this week. I try to be careful about our fruit because I know all it takes is one bunch of bananas with the right hitchhikers on them and in no time those little brown flies will be taking over the kitchen.

I saw the first fruit fly a couple of days ago, and immediately wrapped up all the fruit. Some of it stayed out and some went in the fridge, but all of it was washed and/or wrapped. The fruit bowl was washed and dried before returning the (wrapped) fruit to it.

I was able to swat a fly or two that first day, but yesterday I saw at least five buzzing around. Sara noticed that I had my head down on the counter weeping (well, not quite), and she trotted off to the computer for a few minutes, then returned with a remedy she’d found.

“Put a small glass or bowl of apple cider vinegar out on the counter,” she instructed, “and add a few drops of dishwashing liquid to it. It should attract the flies and kill them.”

I am sorry that I’m admitting to killing flies in such a cruel way, for those of you who ponder such things. I would have preferred their quick demises with a merciful swat, but that wasn’t working for me. I did what Sara suggested, and within two minutes the first fly had succumbed.

Michael and I went grocery shopping and when we returned an hour and a half later, there were at least 10 fruit flies at the bottom of the little bowl with apple cider vinegar and Dawn dishwashing liquid in it.

I put out a fresh batch last night before I went to bed and lo, this morning there are none in the dish. The fruit flies are gone.

Perhaps all of you already know this information. I might be decades behind in the household hints department and 8 out of 10 homes in America (and England and Australia and Canada and Switzerland and Ireland) have already been employing this method for battling fruit flies for years now.

But just in case you have a fruit fly or two and you hadn’t heard of this strategy, I thought I would pass it on. There’s a teeny part of me that feels bad for the kind of end the flies are meeting in my home, but oh well.

The Georgia peaches, Pink Lady apples, Anjou pears and the Hawaiian bananas and pineapples take priority.

How do you deal with fruit flies?


  1. Ember says:

    Our cats kill everything. Everything. They took down a pigeon and they even attack our feet. And they eat rubber bands.
    Well done, by the way!

  2. Just Julie says:

    Wow. Fierce felines! Poor pigeon. Rubber band repast?

    Clearly I need to take the alliteration down a notch. Naptime maybe?


  3. Helen in Switzerland says:

    This is brilliant and just what I need – I’m off to give it a go RIGHT NOW!!!

  4. Just Julie says:

    Let me know how it works for you Helen!

  5. Sharon says:

    Fruit flies also love wine. A splash at the bottom of a wine glass works really well.

  6. Just Julie says:

    Aha…maybe this is a more merciful way to die, too. 🙂

  7. Kay says:

    Oh, I don’t know if I should own up to the following. After having a awful time with moths every night, Alan bought a ‘Bug-Bat’. It dispenses an electrical charge … enough said. Maybe not as merciful as the glass of wine method, but still quick and efficient. However, if you can imagine my 59 year-old husband rushing around the bedroom last thing at night imagining himself to be a cross between a great hunter and a Wimbledon champion …..! Well at least it makes me chuckle anyway!
    Our cat must be related to Ember’s cat. Mario likes chasing and eating flies (regardless of damage done to window blinds). He also caught a bird this week and actually GROWLED at me when I got too near him and his prey.
    I’m surrounded by alpha males!!!!! 🙂

  8. Just Julie says:

    Your comments always make me laugh, Kay! I now have a picture of Alan in my head with that electrical bat, chasing the doomed moths. I read a quote once that I thought applied to Michael since our household had one male and all females. Even our dogs have always been female. “He was clinging to a rickety raft of testosterone in a raging sea of estrogen”….your situation would be the opposite! xxoo

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