There’s little not to like about summer, but if you had to pick out a particular bugbear of this season, it would have to be flies entering your home.
Flies are more than just a noisy nuisance, making a mess on surfaces and windows. They’re also germ carriers, spreading up to 65 diseases, such as salmonellosis, cholera and conjunctivitis, through their saliva and faeces.
While keeping your home fly-free is tricky at this time of year, especially when windows and doors are flung open to let in cooling air, there are measures you can take to keep these pesky bugs away as much as possible.
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Don’t make it easy for flies to enter your home. Place mesh screens or beaded curtains on doors and windows so flies can’t find their way inside.
Rumour has it that clear bags half filled with water and copper coins, that are hung on doors or windows, also make effective no-fly zones. It’s not certain why or how this works, but some people believe that flies get scared by the light reflected through the water.
Flies enter a house because they’re looking for food, so don’t give them an open invitation to dine at your dwelling. Put food away after use and keep overripe fruit in the fridge instead of a bowl. Wash dirty plates immediately or stack them in the dishwasher. Flies are also attracted to moist pet food, so don’t leave any cat or dog food lying around for longer than necessary.
Make sure you empty kitchen bins regularly and keep them spotlessly clean. Ensure bin lids close properly to avoid giving flies the green light to go inside.
Mop up any spillages straightaway, and keep surfaces clean using an anti-bacterial spray to ensure any flies that land don’t have the opportunity to spread their germs.
With their reputation for landing on dirt and decaying matter, it might seem that flies aren’t fussy insects, but there are actually some things they aren’t partial to. Mint, basil, geraniums, thyme and lavender are off the list for flies, so place pots of these on windowsills to keep these bugs at bay. They also don’t like the aromas of lemongrass, eucalyptus, cinnamon, camphor, cloves and citronella. Diffusers with these scents placed at entry points will act as natural deterrents, as will the spray from essential oils.
Alternatively, keep carnivorous plants on window ledges, such as the Venus flytrap. These plants eat flies, so they will be doing you a massive favour!
Although you can purchase electronic fly zappers, swatters and other products to ban flies from your home, you can also make simple, cheap deterrents that often work just as well.
An effective flytrap can be made by filling a jar with sugar infused water and a paper cone placed on top. Flies will be attracted to the sugary solution, but won’t be able to escape from the jar once through the cone. Wine or vinegar works equally as well as sugar water.
You can also purchase flypaper traps that can be hung up on windows or doors. These work by being coated in a sticky substance that attracts flies and literally glues them to the surface. However, you can easily make your own flypaper by using brown bags or card and coating them with boiled corn syrup.
Ban the breeding grounds
Flies will happily breed in your home under the right conditions, so don’t make your place habitable for them. They especially like damp areas, so avoid leaving wet cloths or mops lying around, and remove condensation from under and around appliances.
Keeping flies out of your home ensures you create a safe, hygienic and pleasant environment. You can also increase the functional and comfort factor in your home with the wide range of stylish furniture solutions from Let Us Furnish.