Getting rid of gnats can be really annoying because they seem to always come back even after you’ve sprayed pesticides. You must be tired of the gnats flying all over your grow room.
Well, you are not alone in this, many indoor growers have the same problem. But you are in luck, because this article highlights a foolproof method on how you can best deal with gnats.
If you are tired of the never-ending cycle of gnat attacks on your indoor grow tent, there is a trick to it. I mean, you’ve probably used the sticky traps and the hydrogen peroxide, but nothing seems to work.
The secret lies in understanding the life cycle of the gnats, which helps apply the right attacking method on each life cycle. The gnats are not only dangerous as adult pests but are also fatal during their larval stages whereby they eat up the plants’ roots.
Therefore, you need to kill them off during all its life cycle stages.
Lack of understanding the life cycle of the gnats is the main reason most indoor growers fail in getting rid of the pests. Luckily, I take you through the different stages of the gnat’s lifecycle, and how to kill them off in each stage.
Table of Contents
- 1 What Causes Spread of Gnats in Your Grow Room
- 2 What’s The Lifecycle of Gnats?
- 3 Preventive Measures to Avoid Gnats in Your Grow Tent
- 4 The Control Measures to Kill Off Gnats in Your Grow Tent
- 5 Final Thoughts
What Causes Spread of Gnats in Your Grow Room
Overwatering is the main reason you should be worried about the gnats. Although plants need water to grow, there comes a time when overdoing it isn’t good for the plants.
Whenever you overwater your plants, you are basically causing root rot, which is a delicious food for the gnats, and trust me, these pests can smell a root rot from very far.
Also, since the gnats reproduce so fast (3 weeks) and in large numbers (about 300 laid eggs), having food that can encourage their number isn’t a good thing.
What’s The Lifecycle of Gnats?
You need to know how gnats reproduce, where they lay eggs, and when do they like to eat? It is important to accustom yourself to such questions and have an in-depth understanding of how the gnats’ larva operate and live within the grow tents.
For starters, there are four main stages – the laying of eggs, larval stage, pupa stage and the adult stage. The adults lay more than 300eggs, which is an incredible number. If you aren’t careful enough, you may end up having a grow tent full of gnats. This can cause all your plants to die.
The next stage is the larval stage where the gnats eat a lot. This is the most dangerous stage of their lifecycle because they feed by eating up the plant’s roots.
What’s worse about the larval is that it takes about 2 weeks! Which means the larva will be eating up your roots for more than 14 days. you’ll be lucky if your plants continue to grow into healthy harvests.
As you can see, the larval stage is the most crucial part, and therefore, this is the stage where you should focus on when applying the pesticides.
The next stage is the pupa stage, whereby the gnatstransform into adults. Finally, the adults get the ability to fly around, which can be annoying to get rid of. The adults have a lifespan of about 7 to 8 days.
The adults do not eat much of the plant’s roots. However, their sole purpose is reproduction. And since each adult can lay up to 300 eggs, they pose a serious danger to your grow tent. You can get rid of the adult gnats by using Neem oil sprays and sticky traps.
Preventive Measures to Avoid Gnats in Your Grow Tent
For those who haven’t experienced any gnats, here are four ways to avoid the prevalence of gnats in the grow tent.
- As mentioned earlier, overwatering your plants isn’t cool. You need to be cautious and have just the right watering amount. This way, you keep the gnats at bay by minimizing root rot, which acts as food for the gnats.
- If you have two different grow tents, perhaps one for nursery purposes, you need to carefully check the plants before introducing them into your main grow tent. Make sure to examine the leaves, soil, and stems to see if the gnats are lurking around the plant.
- You can use the yellow sticky traps, which are very effective at trapping the adult gnats that keep flying around the grow tent. You just need to place the sticky traps horizontally rather than vertical to the plant’s canopies.
- Add a mulching layer to avoid any damping of the soil due to overwatering. You can use dry grass to cover the soil parts. Better yet, the most effective alternative to mulching is to use Fungus Gnat Mosquito Bits. This helps annihilate the gnat larva by discouraging the laying of eggs on the soil. The Gnat Bits are sprinkled alongside the water when watering. It then enters the soil, which kills off any laid eggs.
The Control Measures to Kill Off Gnats in Your Grow Tent
If you are unfortunate to have gnats already infesting your grow tent, it’s recommendable to apply the following methods. Since each method kills the gnats in their different lifecycle stages, it is important to mix them up instead of using only one method.
Method 1.) Use Hydrogen Peroxide Soak:
You’ll need to get a hydrogen peroxide solution and use it to soak the plants’ surroundings. Just like the Gnat Bits, the peroxide soak solution kills the larva and prevents them from eating up the roots.
The solution offers some level of effectiveness, but you’ll have to apply it to the plants regularly. It’s the best and easiest and most affordable way of getting rid of the gnat larva. You can get it in your local stores.
Method 2.) Neem Oil RTU
The Neem Oil for gnats works similar to the hydrogen peroxide, but just a little bit stronger. It not only kills the larva but also annihilates the egg’s capability to hatch. Better yet, its chemical composition helps make the adult gnats weaker in their reproduction cycle.
The best thing about the Neem oil for ridding off gnats is that it also kills other insects and pests that may affect your plants.
Method 3.) Use the Gnat and Mosquito Bits
I’ve mentioned this earlier. Basically, the Fungus Bits are applied while watering the plants. This keeps the soil less “watery” and moist whilst also killing the larva.
In terms of its chemical composition, the Gnat Bits contain something known as BT (Bacillus Thuringiensis), which kills any larva trying to find their way into the plant’s roots.
The only tricky part using the Gnat Bits is to be patient. You should expect instant result in killing the larva. The Bits work by gradually weakening the larvasuch that they lack the energy to feed on the plants’ roots.
Method 4.) Make Good Use of Killer Pesticides
Ah, weren’t the Neem oil and Bits pesticides? Well, yeah, they are kind of pesticides (getting rid of pests). However, the following pesticides are much stronger and are true “killers” because they have been designed to brutally kill the larva.
You can get the AzaMax whose active incident is the Azadirachtinand has more than100 limonoids. The two-ingredient are anti-feeding agents whereby they disable the larva’s ability to eat. The pesticide kills the larva through starvation.
The Azamax is also a growth regulator such that it disrupts the gnat’s lifecyclesuch that the laid eggs do not hatch as fast as required. The gnat adults also do not reach their potential fast enough, that is if they do.
The best thing about the AzaMax is its capability to be absorbed by the plants. The plants intake the Azadirachtin ingredients into the leaf tissue. This further prevents the gnats’ attack.
Method 5.) Apply Gnat Nematodes
The nematodes are microscopic worms that are introduced into the plant’s growth process to eat up the larva. Yes, just as the larva eats up the plants’ roots, the nematodes are meant to retaliate by eating the larva.
The Nema GlobeFungus nematodes seek up the larval stages of gnats and kill them for food. Other than gnats, the nematodes can also get rid of other insects and pests that may infest your grow tent.
With the expert information you’ve just read, you can finally eradicate the gnats attacking your grow plants. You can now comfortably sleep at night knowing that gnats attack has been take care of.
The killer pesticides combined with the Gnat Bits, Neem oil and Hydrogen peroxide is a great way of completely ridding off the gnats. However, as preventive measures, you can avoid future gnat attacks by having a controlled watering system for your grow tent.
You also need to use sticky traps, which kill the adult gnats and also add mulch to the plants to minimize root rot. In essence, you need to combine both the preventive and control measures. And also learn about the lifecycle of the gnats.