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Old 11-06-2013, 10:26 AM #1
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a guide to COCO and Fungus Gnats (little black flies)

Ok so just about finishing my 1st coco grow, and pretty much from the start i had a few of these little black fly's, there wernt bothering me so i didn't do anything about it. Now im a week from harvest and my grow room is infested with them not to mention they are flying around the rest of my house to! there are hundreds of them stuck in all my sticky buds and it doesnt look to tasty anymore! I read a few thread that had mentioned them and preventions, but i thought i would make this thread so it can be stickyed so all coco newbies can prevent this from happening to them!

What are fungas gnats?

Fungus gnats are small, dark, short-lived flies. The larvae of fungus gnats feed on plant roots and fungi, which aids in the decomposition of organic matter. The adults are 2–5 mm long and are important pollinators that can help spread mushroom spores as well as plant pollen.

How to PREVENT them?

Fungas gnats lay larvae in the top inch or two of moist soil. they then hatch and fly around to breed before returning to the CoCo to lay more eggs. To prevent this, simply dress the top of your coco with an inch of perlite, vercumlite or sand ( so that it stays dry) and then they will not survive here. I also recommend getting a sticky fly trap to hang in your room to catch any straglers before they end up in your buds!

So there you go, please every one who grows coco, TOP DRESS YOUR POTS! and it will prevent an outbreak of mostly harmless, but annoying gnats!

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Old 11-06-2013, 10:18 PM #2
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I tried Gnatnix with moderate success. Better than diatomaceous earth at least, but still not 100% effective.


Real treatment requires multiple areas of attack.

1. Keep the area around the grow clean. This means removing fallen fruit from the trees in the back yard. Keeping the kitchen spotless. Not forgetting about that slice of tomato between the stove and the cabinet...

2. Top dress the media, or better yet, cover it and run your drippers beneath.

3. Use yellow sticky traps to help trap adult flies in the grow chamber and monitor their population.

4. Use a root drench product like gnatrol to control larvae.

5. Use a sticky stem product like Tree Tanglefoot to collect young flies as they exit the media.

If you can keep their populations low in the surrounding area, keep them from getting into the media, attack them as adults, young, and as larvae, then you'll have the best chance at fending off an infestation.
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Old 11-06-2013, 10:51 PM #3
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Nematodes nematodes nematodes.

Top dressing will not eliminate them if you have drainage holes in your pots.
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Old 11-06-2013, 10:52 PM #4
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Sm90 start to finish will prevent bugs and keep the roots clean
Grow-More E-Z Wet SE also works for soft bodies from what Im told
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Old 11-06-2013, 11:07 PM #5
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great info guys much appreciated
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Old 11-07-2013, 05:01 PM #6
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i find letting my coco go dry is the best way to knock them out. just turn the pump off for a couple of days, till the pots are light, but the plants are still looking ok, then water again and you will find the population has all but gone. but yeah mosquito drenches work too. nematodes are also nice for keeping them down.
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Old 11-07-2013, 05:14 PM #7
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Well this is a good thread! I just got those little fuckers in my coco there aren't a lot of them. I usually see like one of two flying around I have sprayed the hell out of them with Ed rosenthals zero tolerance which helped but didn't knock them out. Sprayed with neem didn't really help top dressed with perlite also didn't help. What I did was drenched the hell out of the coco with zero tolerance, sprayed all the plants with captn Lou and robs mighty bomb and used doctor doom fogger and I haven't seen anymore since knock on wood. Peace mike
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Old 11-07-2013, 06:14 PM #8
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do the nematodes only work with organics?
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Old 11-08-2013, 04:12 PM #9
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myself , i run coco hempy style, so i only have one drainage hole which i have pvc pipe inserted into running to a drainage tub, so im guessing the gnats wont be able to crawl up that and lay eggs that way so top dressing should be enough for me. I can see how this would not be sufficient for other growing methods though! i have also read that just mixing some washing up liquid with water and watering your plants well with it, let it sit for a couple of hours, then flush out, will kill any gnat larve inside the coco. gota be worth a try!
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Old 11-09-2013, 09:52 PM #10
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I put the yellow sticky paper on the coco surface, leaned up against the side wall of each plant container. Amazing how simple and effective they've been for me. The gnats love to land on them. I had a really bad infestation before... when I put a sticky strip down, I counted over 100 stuck to it within 24 hours from just one plant bucket... probably over 1000 total from all the traps.

Now I'll see a gnat here and there but usually they land on the trap before I see them. I don't think a gnat here and there is significant enough to cause damage as my best harvest ever (years of growing) had a number of gnats flying around in each plant bucket. But something has to keep their numbers low as they can quickly kill big healthy plants under some circumstances.

I tried beneficial nematodes but didn't notice a difference. Though I tried them because some people have had great success with them.
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