Does anyone have any suggestions on how to control pests from hanging out around the compost bin? Fruit flies seem to enjoy camping out for the summer in my outdoor compost bin. This is even after I've buried the fruit and vegetable peels under a layer of dirt and leaves. Earlier in the spring, I left a narrow-necked bottle filled with vinegar and soap to attract the flies. Initially it worked, but it also ended up "selecting" a remaining group of flies who seemed to have caught on to the vinegar trick. They now ignore the vinegar bottle and head straight for the compost. Smartypants bugs;) A gardener friend suggested spraying Listerine around the bin to repel the flies. Before I go out and buy a bottle of mouthwash, I was wondering, is there another way I can get rid the the flies? Do those with worm composts encounter this problem, too? Maybe I should switch composting methods. Thanks for your help!
We have worms directly in our garden beds. (I got them originally to help aerate the awful soil.) We dig a small hole between plants, drop the produce ends/peels in, then cover it up. No bugs, no rodents. Plants are flourishing!
At my DD's school, they have a worm bin...a giant worm bin - long and narrow, raised off the ground. They use cardboard egg cartons on one half of the bin and place the worm food (i.e. produce waste) underneath the egg cartons. The worms feed on that side of the bin. When they succeed in turning that side into compost, we start feeding on the other side of the worm bin with fresh (reused) egg cartons and turn the other ones into the compost. The worms gradually migrate over to the new feeding area and we collect the compost.
At our house, I was the only person willing to dig the hole and bury the produce waste after the initial "fun" wore off. So, I decided to adopt the cardboard egg carton portion of the above. One area of one garden bed does not receive enough sunlight (aka none) to support edible plants. I collected some used cardboard egg cartons and placed them there. Now, other family members lift the egg carton, drop the produce waste, and replace the egg carton. Easy-peasy. No bugs, no rodents.
Therefore, I'd say you may be able to try plain cardboard or cardboard egg cartons to control the bugs or yes, try worms. They make the composting process go faster, too.
Thanks, Karin. I will give the cardboard/egg carton method a try. The compost produced is amazing, isn't it? Our plants have never been happier!
Update: I upped the amount of 'brown' materials (dried leaves, paper, etc.), aerated the pile, and added a couple of pieces of cardboard on top. I am definitely noticing a reduction in the number of flies. Some still get through to the sides of the compost pile, but I can live with that. Thanks again for the tip!
Fruit flies is common in summer and it not only degrade the fruit quality but also have an effect on our health. For this, lot of home-made solutions are available but according to me, you can call pest control Mamarmoneck NY. They have a special service for summer.
Bokashi composting is a great option for composting all of your food waste without pests. Bokashi composting ferments (or pickles) your food waste in a sealed container (usually kept inside your kitchen). After 2 weeks of fermentation, I then bury my fermented food waste directly into my garden (though you can put it into your compost pile too). After the fermentation process the pests are no longer attracted to the food waste.
I started bokashi composting a couple of years ago and it has been a real game changer for me and composting. Plus I've never seen my garden (and soil) so healthy.
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