If you have a snake plant, chances are you’ve had to deal with gnats at some point. These tiny pests can be incredibly annoying, and they’re also pretty tricky to get rid of. Luckily, you can do a few things to get rid of gnats for good. In this article, we’ll go over why snake plants attract gnats first and how to get rid of them once and for all.
Why Does My Snake Plant Have Gnats?
Snake plants may have gnats for a variety of reasons. One is overwatering, and the other is a sweet fragrance that this plant emits. And finally, frequent misting can make snake plants an ideal environment for gnats.
Let’s start by overwatering. If you overwater your snake plant, the excess moisture will create the perfect environment for gnats to lay their eggs. The larvae will then feed on the plant’s roots, causing the plant to become weak and unhealthy.
Seeing gnats around your snake plant is a sure sign that you’re overwatering it.
Another reason gnats get attracted to snake plants is that the plant emits a gas that these insects find irresistible.
Misting can also be a reason why gnats get attracted to snake plants. In fact, frequent misting make the plant moist, which creates an ideal environment for gnats to lay their eggs.
While the gnats are not usually harmful to snake plants, they can be a nuisance to humans. Luckily, you can do a few things to get rid of them.
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How Do I Get Rid of Gnats on My Snake Plant?
You can use a mixture of water and dish soap to get rid of gnats for snake plants. Mix 1 part water and 1 dish soap in a spray bottle and mist the plant. The dish soap will kill the gnats, and the water will help to rinse away any eggs that are present.
If you prefer dealing with your plant’s issues using organic solutions, here is a complete guide on how to get rid of gnats on snake plants using chemical and non-chemical solutions.
How to Get Rid of Gnats on Snake Plant Using a Non-Chemical Approach?
Using Sticky Traps
Sticky traps are an effective way to eliminate gnats from snake plants. The traps attract the gnats with a sweet scent and then trap them on the sticky surface. This prevents the gnats from laying their eggs on the plants, which can help reduce the population of these pests.
Altering Environmental Conditions
One way to eliminate gnats from snake plants is to alter the environmental conditions. This can be done by reducing the amount of moisture in the air, either by using a dehumidifier or by opening windows and doors to allow air to circulate. Additionally, keeping plants clean and free of debris will help reduce the gnats population.
Water from The Bottom
Watering from the bottom helps to get rid of gnats from plants by preventing them from laying their eggs in the soil. The larvae can only survive in moist conditions, so by keeping the soil dry, you will prevent them from hatching.
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Cover the Soil with Coarse Sand or Fine Gravel
One way to get rid of gnats from plants is to cover the soil with coarse sand or fine gravel. This will help to keep the gnats away from the roots and will also help to prevent them from laying their eggs in the soil.
How to Get Rid of Gnats on Snake Plant Using a Biological Approach?
A practical biological approach to get rid of gnats on snake plants is by using Gnatrol and Mosquito Bits. Gnatrol is a liquid applied to the soil, and it kills the larvae of gnats. On the other hand, Mosquito Bits are granules used in the soil, and they work by killing the larvae of gnats.
To use Gnatrol and Mosquito Bits for fighting gnats on the snake plant:
- Mix the products together and sprinkle them around the base of the plant.
- Treat the soil, as this is where the gnats lay their eggs.
- Reapply the mixture every few days as needed.
How to Get Rid of Gnats on Snake Plant Using a Chemical Approach?
One of the most effective chemicals used to get rid of gnats for snake plants is pyrethrins or synthetic pyrethroids. Chemicals containing these substances or only one can help get rid of gnats and any other insect that feeds on plants. The insecticides work by contact, so they must come in direct contact with the insects to be effective.
To apply insecticides containing pyrethrins or synthetic pyrethroids, mix the recommended amount with water in a spray bottle and thoroughly spray all plant leaves, stems, and soil surfaces. Be sure to follow the label instructions for how often to reapply the insecticide.
Generally, you can repeat weekly, at least 4 weeks, but I recommend following the instructions given by the product manufacturer.
Finally, we don’t recommend using the chemical approach unless the infestation is severe or when the non-chemical and biological process does not give the expected results.
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How Can You Prevent Bugs from Infesting Snake Plants?
To prevent bugs from infesting your snake plant, you should keep the plant clean by removing any dead leave, mulch, or moss. You can also use mosquito bits and sticky traps to catch any bug before it lays down on your plant.
Another way to keep your snake plant bug free is by keeping it dry. You can use well-draining soil and let it dry completely between waterings.
Here is a detailed guide on how to keep bugs and gnats away from your snake plant.
Remove Dead Leaves & Debris from the Soil
Keeping your snake plant free of dead leaves helps to prevent gnats. In fact, gnats are attracted to the moisture and decaying matter found in dead leaves. By removing dead leaves, you deprive them of their food source and make your home less inviting.
Remove and Avoid Stones, Mulch, Moss, and Any Other Top Dressings that Hold Moisture
Removing and avoiding stones, mulch, moss, and other top dressings helps prevent gnats in snake plants. Removing these potential hiding places and food sources will make your home less inviting to gnats. In addition, avoid overwatering your plants, as this can create the perfect environment for gnats to breed.
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Bottom-Water Instead of Top-Watering
Bottom watering helps prevent gnats in snake plants by keeping the soil moist and not allowing the top layer to dry out. This prevents the eggs from hatching and the larvae from getting enough oxygen to survive.
Provide The Right Soil Drainage
Good soil drainage helps to prevent gnats in snake plants by keeping the roots of the plants dry. When the roots are wet, they are more susceptible to attack by gnats. But, if the roots are dry, the gnats will be unable to lay their eggs in the soil, and the plants will be less likely to be infested.
Let the Soil Dry out Between Waterings
Letting the soil dry out between waterings is one way to help prevent them. Gnats are attracted to moist conditions, so allowing the top layer of soil to dry out can make your plant less attractive to them.
Keep Clean Sticky Traps Near Plants as An Early Alert Tool:
Another way to prevent gnats in houseplants is to keep clean sticky traps near the plants. The traps will catch any gnats flying around and prevent them from laying eggs in the soil.
What Kinds of Bugs Are Commonly Found on Snake Plants?
The most common bugs on snake plants are mealybugs, thrips, aphids, spider mites, and whitefly. Each of these bugs gets attracted to the snake plant for specific reasons. But, generally, when the plant is not clean and moist, these bugs find the best environment to live in and lay their eggs.
Why Do Mealybugs Get Attracted to Snake Plants?
Mealybugs are often attracted to snake plants because of the plant’s unique appearance. The snake plant’s leaves are usually bright green, which can be appealing to mealybugs. Additionally, the snake plant’s leaves are often long and slender, making them easy to climb by mealybugs.
Why Do Thrips Get Attracted to Snake Plants?
Thrips are small, winged insects attracted to the snake plant because of the nectar produced by the plant. The nectar is a sweet substance that the thrips feed. The thrips are attracted to the snake plant because of the sweetness of the nectar.
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Why Do Aphids Get Attracted to Snake Plants?
Aphids are attracted to snake plants for a few reasons. One reason is that the snake plant emits a chemical called limonene, which aphids find irresistible. Additionally, the snake plant’s leaves are a perfect size and shape for aphids to lay their eggs on. Lastly, the snake plant provides aphids with a safe place to hide from predators.
Why Do Whiteflies Get Attracted to Snake Plants?
Whiteflies are attracted to snake plants because they produce a large amount of nectar. Nectar is a sugary substance that the whiteflies feed on. The snake plant also has a large amount of oil, which the whiteflies use to lay their eggs.
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