Tuesday 21 August 2012

Why are Flies so Irritating?

I've never understood why flies:
  • need to be quite so noisy
  • congregate around light fittings when the lights are not even on
  • like to settle on the screen of the TV when I'm trying to watch it
  • always turn in right angles when there are no obvious barriers in their way

Mr TH gets even more irritated than I do & has been known to vacuum them up with the hoover nozzle. Despite the fact that this has high entertainment value for me, I do prefer to by fly-free.

There are obvious ways to deter flies such as keeping all surfaces clean and clear of food & food debris.

Additionally, you could rummage in the household cupboards...

To repel flies:
  • put strong smelling spices/herbs (cloves, mint, basil, bay, etc...) in a dish near the window/door.
  • spray the flies with hairspray (acts in a similar way to fly spray).
  • create a room fragrance spray by adding a few drops of essential oil to a small spray bottle. Flies really dislike the smell of lavender and eucalyptus. Alternatively, you could use other oils such lemongrass, citronella or clove.
  • spray them with strong tea (probably not a good idea inside your house).
  • plant rue, lavender or bay near your window/door.
  • put dots of a strong smelling essential oil along the bottom of curtains/blinds. (Please be aware that oil may stain some fabrics/damage paintwork. Always test first or put oil on pieces of fabric/cotton wool/absorbent paper & put in saucers along a windowsill. Alternatively dip cocktail sticks in the oil and put them in a cup on the windowsill).

To attract flies; 
  • buy a carnivorous plant.
  • encourage spiders.
  • hang a bunch of sage leaves from the ceiling (I've seen it work- the flies like the smell of sage & congregate around the leaves instead of the rest of the room).
  • use good old fashioned fly-paper).You could make your own using jam/ honey/syrup/treacle/beer, etc...messy but less chemicals than the real thing!
  • set up a jam jar trap by adding a small amount of sticky sweetness (see above) & water to a jar. Hopefully, they will spend their time there instead of irritating you.

What works for you?


Mrs. Micawber said...

What a lot of interesting tips! We didn't have any flies while our heat wave was going on - but as soon as the weather moderated, they seemed to appear out of nowhere.

They drive me nuts, but I have a hard time killing them. (I try to tell myself they'll be gone in a couple of days.) But we are sometimes driven to use the fly swatter.

Keeping the windows open and a fan pulling air through the house also seems to make them lie low.

Marigold Jam said...

Mint didn't work for me although I had a pot on the windowsill the flies kept coming! I don't have a solution and in fact I am quite lucky in that I rarely get flies in the house anyway maybe it is the outside environment that brings them or not as the case may be as we had loads when we rented a self catering cottage on a farm!

harmony and rosie said...

We have a fly gun languishing somewhere in the cupboards. My husband bought it for a cheap laugh but I had to it a stop to it when they were being shot/squashed on the walls. Sounds repulsive doesn't it?!

Calico Kate said...

Bizarre but true .... hang a ziplock plastic sandwich bag, half filled with water and 3 or 4 pennies, in the window. It really does work. We can have problems with flies, partly because of the cats food dishes, but this chemical free inexpensive method really does work.

Anonymous said...

Since we got cats two years ago, we rarely see flies, spiders, creepy crawlies of any kind actually! Orange oil at the windows worked before their arrival though :-)

Frances said...

What a wonderfully wise, witty and generous lady you are.

Many thanks for all this info and the assorted tips.


Not So Granny said...

Like marigold jam, I don't seem to get flies in my new house very much I need to get ready for a swarm now for saying that! My father in law mentioned how few wasps there had been this year and we were then plagued by them the rest of our camping trip.

Rachel said...

Must get the lavender oil out again...!

...Nina Nixon... said...

I do like your tips because to be honest - flies annoy the hell out of me too.

Though saying that our cat is quite good at disposing of them 'eewwww' - disgusting.

Nina x

The mum of all trades said...

I never knew about the essential oils. I will have to get picking my lavender. We are blessed with exceptionally small and annoying flies at night as we are near a lough. If a window is left open in Summer it is a nightmare.

Pomona said...

We have had lots of fruit flies this year - jam and chutney making has brought them out in hordes! But they go again when all is cleared up and put away.

Pomona x

Annie Cholewa said...

Another 'hooverer' here, and we do have a see through Dyson so hopefully I'd know if we had maggots! (Eugh Sue!)

But I also scatter pots of mints about the place, hopefully.

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