The Easy Way To Get Rid Of Fruit Flies Without Sprays

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If you struggle with those pesky flies hovering around your fruit, then this article will help you get rid of fruit flies without chemical sprays is just what you need. A great simple living tip that will stop the invasion fast just by using what you already have sitting around your home. 

Homesteading tips you can use both inside and outside of the home.

how to get rid of fruit flies

I love the summer.

Swimming, shorts, the sunshine, fresh fruit and veggies, ice cream cones, lazy days on my swing. Out of all the seasons, summer is my favorite.

If you have fruit flies and want them gone without using chemicals, you've come to the right place!

What I don’t like about summer is all those pesky bugs, especially ones inside of my home.

I also don’t like chemicals or using pesticides to help deal with those bugs. And that is why I am always looking for natural ways to control bugs and pests.

Unfortunately, sometimes, doing things naturally risks losing effectiveness. Luckily, in the case of fruit flies, this is not true. I have an easy and effective way to eliminate those pesky flies without any sprays or chemicals.

The best part is you should have everything you need in your kitchen right now, which is perfect for a tight budget!

What causes fruit flies in the house?

The biggest cause of fruit flies is ripening fruits and even some vegetables. The fermentation is something they are drawn too.

In the summer, the heat and humidity speed up the ripening process, and in just one day, you can go from zero fruit flies to a bunch.

How to Get Rid of Fruit Flies

There are all kinds of ways people have tried to eliminate fruit flies, and I have tried most, if not all, of them. This method I am going to share with you is by far the most effective way to get them gone. It’s super simple to setup and it works amazingly well even on large swarms.

#1. The Tools Needed

The tools you need to make this DIY fly trap are simple:

  1. An empty bread bag.
  2. A ripe banana.
a bunch of ripe bananas and an empty bread bag to trap fruit flies.

Fruit flies are attracted to sugars, and bananas are the perfect way to attract a lot of flies in one shot.

#2. How much banana

All you need is a small piece, about 3 inches, or half a banana. If you have a large number of flies you can make more than one trap.

I have found that in most cases, half of a banana is all that you need and works well to attract most, if not all, the flies.

A bunch of ripe bananas sitting on a counter

#3. The Setup

Place the banana, with the peel on, into a bread bag all the way in the back; sometimes smashing it up just a bit will help as well—just a slight squeeze with your hand to soften up the fruit more.

Why do you use a bred bag for a fruit fly trap?

Bread bags work best since they are long and skinny. The flies go in but struggle to get back out.

I have not had the same success with bags of other sizes. The trick here is to lure the fruit flies in and make it as difficult as possible for them to get out. That is why the long bread bag is the perfect trap.

A view of a piece of banana sitting inside of a bread bag

#4. The Placement

Set the bag containing the banana in the area where you notice the most flies.

You may need to fiddle with the bag a bit to make sure it is going to stay open. I find if you just fold the end of the bag by rolling it once or twice, you can keep the bag open more easily.

No worries though, even if you have only a small opening, the scent of the banana will lure the fruit flies inside of it.

a fruit fly trap sitting a counter. A bread bag with a banana piece sitting inside

#5. The Timing

The best time to set your trap is overnight. Since there is less activity in your home, the flies can go after the banana without getting scared off by activity.

Set the bag up and turn out the lights, letting it do its thing overnight.

In the morning, working carefully so as to not let any flies escape, carefully close the end of the bag, twist it tight, and tie it into a knot.

Be sure to not move the bag at all before closing it up. Those little flies are quick, and you want to catch just as many as you can.

Also, do not let the air out, or you will risk those pesky fruit flies escaping.

To test it and ensure it works, give the tied and secure bread bag a little shake. That shake of your bag will confirm the capture of your fly flock.  (assuming those pesky fruit flies fly in a flock!)

A bread bag tied in a knot on a kitchen counter

Next, toss that bag in the trash. Easy!

If you have a terrible problem with fruit flies, you may have to repeat this once or twice.

The good news is, that I have never EVER had this not work.

After being away for a few days and not running the garbage disposal, my son had a severe problem in his home. We used this technique, and after just three days, every single fruit fly was gone.

Remember, if you repeat this tip, use a brand-new bag and a fresh banana piece each time.

Fruit fly trap update

Since I have done this post, I have received lots of emails with alternative methods: apple cider vinegar, dish soap, apple pieces, and other ideas.

I decided to give a few of these tips a try, and I have found that none of them work quite as well as the banana bag trick. If you find your way works better, then great!

For us, however, nothing works quite as effectively as the banana and long skinny bread bag to keep the trapped flies from escaping. 

Sometimes it’s the simplest ideas that work the best. And isn’t that good news for us? No more poisons or other chemicals that can be worrying, especially if you have pets or young children.

If you can find a natural way to get rid of fruit flies, then by all means…do it! 

More Life Tips Resources:

how to stop fruit flies naturally

26 Comments

  1. I recently discovered that leaving a bottle of witch hazel open traps them as well. They fly into the hole in the lid and get trapped and drown in the Witch hazel. Just throw the bottle away!!

    1. Twyla,
      That is a great idea, I can’t wait to try it out! Thanks!

      1. A small glass about half full of apple cider vinegar with plastic wrap on top poked with holes the size of an ice pick sits in my window during fruit fly season! Fruit flys gone, when they come, and they will if you eat fruit! Works every year!

        1. This is a new one for me!
          I am really excited to try this one out as well! I use ACV on my farm with my goats and chickens (and myself too 🙂 ) so I always have a bottle in my kitchen. Which is great news since I don’t always have ripe bananas. I also love that I can keep it our for longer than just overnight. I will try this out and do an update here.

          Thanks Barbara!

    2. You can also use vinegar. Works great! Cover with plastic wrap and put a rubber brand over it to prevent any gaps. Poke a couple tiny holes in the wrap and set the bowl near your fresh fruit.

      1. Cant stop talking.. says:

        Vinegar and a drop of dishsoap. No need for any covering. The soap breaks the surface tension and they drown.

      2. I have found that you don’t even need the plastic if you put a drop or two of dish soap (ANY brand, even homemade will do). I have done this for years, as every year when I buy fruit or my daughter comes and puts it in the trash instead of the compost container. This has NEVER failed me. I find vinegar is much less expensive than wasting a banana (often pricey, and not something I keep all the time) or finding the bag has a small or large hole in it at the last minute. the vinegar will KILL them. I put it where I see them hovering the most. Several small bowls (I use glass or ceramic custard or ramekins). When full or the vinegar has evaporated, simply rinse and re-fill . I had an infestation for a LONG time, but this worked and I am now ff free ! YAY!

    3. Anonymous says:

      I just forgot to put the lid on my bottle of witch hazel and bam! The next day it was filled with fruit flies

  2. I hate the pesky fruit flies in my kitchen. I will have to give this a try! Thanks for the great tip!

  3. Try running a fan in the room. Fruit flea dry out quickly. You may need to close the doors to the room.

      1. what do they look like? are they tiny?

  4. We eat a lot of fruit, bananas especially. Usually if I have fruit flies the bananas are the culprits. I found something that works great for us – no more fruit flies! As soon as I get bunches of bananas home, using my sink sprayer, I carefully spray all the surfaces of the peels then set the bunches out to dry. I can only assume there are tiny eggs on the peels or something, I mean, where do fruit flies come from anyways? Even in the winter (I live in Michigan) I sometimes get them. Of course I don’t do this with fruits or vegetables with delicate skins leaving me to only wash those just before eating or using. I’ve used the other traps before and they do work, but I like the sound of of the bread bag trap.

  5. Thanks for all great tips. I love to see more tricks please.

      1. Thanks for the banana trip. Will try. Never had luck with vinegar/soap/holed plastic. My fruit flies are too intelligent; attracted, but stroll the perimeter, rarely going in! I’ve had great luck using the formula but piling soap SUDS on top of the solution. They fly into the bubble cloud, can’t maneuver and DIE. The disadvantage is you need to be around to keep it topped off. Keep a capped canning jar with soap and water around, shake it to make new suds and scoop out with a small silicone spatula. (Hope the banana is easier. Haha)

  6. I STAB ‘EM WITH AN ICE PICK.. REGARDS, ..JM

  7. LaDonna McDaniel says:

    This really really draw them and traps them.ive used this method 4 yrs! Plain ACV

  8. I have trouble with fruit flies in the house. I’m definitelt going to try this out today evening. Thank you. I’ll get back here whether it works.

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