Friday, October 22, 2010

Build A Better Fly Trap

Life is full of wins and fails.

Getting a new car. Win!

Forgetting you drove your new car to the mall and looking for the old car for 45 minutes in the parking lot. Fail.

Setting your alarm clock for 5:30 so you can get an early start to the day and not have the usual morning frazzled rush. Win!

Sleeping in till 9:00, grumbling about your stupid, broken alarm clock, running around more rushed and frazzled than usual, then wondering why there's a beeping sound coming from your bedroom at dinnertime. Fail.

Complimenting yourself at the party because your usually snug dress is actually a tad loose. Win!

Finding out at home that the sneaky side zipper you always forget was unzipped the whole evening. Fail.

Scoring big boxes of fresh produce at the farmer's market. Win!

Not dealing quickly with said boxes of produce and your kitchen becomes fruit fly central. Epic fail.

I hate fruit flies. They're so sneaky. When you're looking for them with a fly swatter, they lurk under a curling cabbage leaf, but when you're trying to eat dinner, they rise like a phantom before your eyes. You attempt to squash them by clapping your hands together, forgetting you're holding a dinner fork. Painful fail.

Last year a Kitchen Queen Gabe (who also does beautiful jewelry) introduced me to the never fail fruit fly trap and my kitchen and my temperament have been so much better since. I love it because it's 1) cheap, 2) doesn't use a specialized gadget that I have to store when not in use, and 3) it works!

First, you take a drinking glass. Plastic will work, but I prefer glass. It's much more satisfying to be able to see how many flies have perished in the trap.

Next, pour in a glug of apple cider vinegar. Fruit flies go nuts for the smell of sour, fermenting food. You can pour in a bit of water to dilute it to a 1:1 ratio.

Add a squirt of dishwasher soap.

Now for the tricky bit. Take a rectangular piece of scrap paper. Don't rip up clean paper, grab something from the recycling bin. About a 1/2 sheet of paper will do. Now pull the bottom two corners together. Cross the over, one on top of the other, so that you form a cone with a small opening in the bottom. Size it with your drinking glass. You want the opening to sit above the level of the apple cider mixture and you want the cone to fit snuggly against the rim of the glass. When the cone is properly sized, tape the edges in place.

Place the paper cone in the glass and set the glass on the counter in a spot where you seem to find the most fruit flies. The next day, pick up the glass and, Voila!, the bottom will be littered with the carcasses of fruit flies who will no longer be pestering you. Win!


Lee Ann said...

Ewwwww! But, thanks! I gotta try this to get rid of the lingering fruit flies from Dan forgetting to dumb the compost bucket while I was gone for a week. Believe you me, it was disgusting *shudders*

Jennifer Jo said...

Great stories!

I just put a piece of plastic wrap over a jar and poke holes in it with a pencil. Works like a charm. (One is on my windowsill right now because I, too, have some rotting apples...FAIL.)

Lisa@The Cutting Edge of Ordinary said...

I just had a swarm of them too. I have about 10lbs of apples left from picking a few weeks ago. Guess it's time to make more applesauce! Thanks for the tip!

Katrina said...

Ha! Got them! We had major fruit flies in Kansas and now that we've moved to Utah--none so far. But knock on wood, tis the season. In Kansas we'd have them all summer and into fall.
I always did the vinegar in a glass trick, too. But I would put plastic wrap over the top and a rubber band around the rim to secure it. Then poke fork sized holes over the top. Those suckers can get in but that can't get out!
Same concept as yours.

Katrina said...

Great little win/fail scenerios, by the way.

Melinda said...

Nifty, thrifty and deadly. Excellent.

Gabriel Sovereign said...

Yay! Glad that worked for you. I actually set one up at my employers house a few weeks ago and did the same for my parents. Hate fruit flies! Yuck!

Thanks also for mentioning my jewelry. So thoughtful. :)

Gabriel Sovereign said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
grace said...

did all those things actually happen to you? i'm trying to not laugh, :)
this is a great method for getting rid of those pests. it's always worked well for me!

Lien said...

great idea about the fruitflies... we had loads of them. I think they came out of the (newly potted) plants. Í'll have a go at this trap! Love your win and fail story!
(congrats on your new car!)

Abby said...

Love a thrify, useful tip! Passing this on to my sister who has recurring issues with those darn flies.

Elle said...

No flies at the moment but we had a bunch a little while ago. Thanks for the great 'gadget' and a good laugh, too. How about not having a new car but still scouting the old one out endlessly in the parking lot...must be fruit flies on the brain because it is getting old, although hope not fermenting yet!

Barbara said...

Brilliant, Lynn! Never read that anyplace else!

(funny on the new car loss....happens to us all!)

Barbara said...

Brilliant, Lynn! Never read that anyplace else!

(funny on the new car loss....happens to us all!)

hobby baker said...

Thanks for a great laugh! This post was an epic WIN.

Anonymous said...

LOL!What an entertaining post! Not to mention informative. Thanks so much for sharing!

Anonymous said...

I get my Lynn-tutored fruit fly traps working every year. This year I discovered they preferred my kefir water and kefir milk more than the apple cider. Dilemma!

The solution ended up being to put lids on my kefir jars just long enough for the incoming fly jets to be diverted to runway number death.

bellini said...

It works like a charm Lynn even without the cone. Even when I went away and thought the little nuisances were gone I still caught at least 10.