How to Get Rid of Fruit Flies Near Indoor Composters or Compost Pails

If your household composts its kitchen scraps, you may have had problems with fruit flies. These tiny flies are harmless, but they are definitely annoying. And they can invade your bowl of fresh fruit, spoiling expensive produce. Whether you keep a compost pail on your countertop or use worms to break down scraps in an indoor compost bin (vermicomposting), you need to give fruit flies the boot! Trap Them If you start fooling around with your kitchen scraps, you will disturb the fruit flies and they will disperse. The first thing you need to do is start trapping them. The quickest way to do this is simply to vacuum the fruit flies up. Station a vacuum cleaner where the flies are congregating. Switch on the vacuum cleaner and wave the hose in their general direction. Be careful not to vacuum up worms, worm bedding, scraps or water. When the flies come within a few inches of the business end of a vacuum hose, they will get sucked in. This seems to kill them – we have examined a bagless vacuum cleaner, and all the flies were dead. Repeat the vacuum treatment several times a day until the population has dwindled. Meanwhile, set up a trap to catch the faster ones that outsmart your vacuum. You can buy them at the store or online. Or make your own fruit fly trap (see photo above): Pour an inch of apple cider vinegar into the bottom of a jar. Add one drop dishwashing …

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How to Move Your Composting Worms Indoors for the Winter

If you saw our blog post about keeping worms warm in the fall and winter, you might have decided to coddle your worms indoors during the cold season. You will be coddled too. Why? One of the huge advantages of indoor composting in the winter is this: It’s more convenient to feed worms indoors Trudging through the snow and ice to reach an outdoor composter means you need to put on boots at a minimum. You might also have to don warm outerwear to deposit a bucket of kitchen scraps. Some folks are outside anyway, or carry the compost out on the way to their vehicle; but for some, it’s a nuisance. Your first step will be to decide where to do your composting. This will depend in part on the size of the composter. A huge outdoor composter might be too heavy or bulky to move indoors. If your composter is the smaller indoor/outdoor tray-based system, such as the Worm Factory 360, they can be placed indoors without much fuss. For convenience, you can leave the big composter outside and set up an additional small-footprint composter indoors. These can be ordered from Uncle Jim’s Worm Farm. Think about a spot in the house that’s out of the way and maintains a reasonable temperature. Worms are most productive at 57 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit. A basement, closet, quiet corner or heated garage could work. If the area you pick gets below 55 degrees, you could look into insulating the composter or safely adding …

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