Flies are running me out of my yard. Help!

Bastrop, TX(Zone 8b)

I have a big house fly problem in my backyard. And they fly in the door every chance they get! But this is just a part of my challenge of landscaping the doggie area of my back yard.

I'm seeing the flies are drawn to uneaten dogfood in bowls on the deck, so I've started removing uneaten food from the area. I even keep my dogs' waste picked up, to deter flies. I also store my household trash bin out off the deck, at the back corner of the house. This, too, probably draws the flies. I have nowhere else to store this large bin. It must be out of view from the street in front of our house.

The flies like to congregate on said dirt out in the sunshine. Maybe some society garlic would ward them off? Would planting mint keep them away? I've tried using those hanging fly traps with the awful smelling liquid inside. Quite yucky for human noses to deal with when out on the deck or in the yard.

This is my horrible "Before" picture. I promise to post an "After" picture of this eyesore soon! The ground is currently just plain dirt, new plantings are on the sketch pad. In this dog area, I'm getting ready to put in an evergreen groundcover and mulch and some blueberry bushes and dwarf peach trees in tall, large containers, to make the plants more dog-proof. Reason: My male dog's leg-hiking and hole-digging has killed off my first attempts at growing shrubs and flowers along the retaining wall base!!
DG'ers: What else can I do about the flies? I am open for suggestions of what you have done that works, but will not harm beneficial insects, small critters, birds, or my dogs. I want to reclaim my back yard to enjoy!! Thanks for any suggestions you offer.

This message was edited May 23, 2008 11:17 PM

Thumbnail by GinnyLu22
Davenport, IA

I used this when I had horses - it seemed to work pretty well, and won't harm anything except the flies.


Bastrop, TX(Zone 8b)

Thank you for your reply. I'll look into this. Sounds really good.

Wichita, KS

Thanks for the website. Looks promising. I've been bothered with flys while I'm working in the yard for the last few years. They are biting flys- feels almost like a bee sting aroung my legs and ankles. My son who lives on a small farm suggested last year that he had some stuff he put on his horses to keep the flys away. We kind of thought he was kidding. I'm going to check on this. It really is a problem. Also the misquitoes are horrible here in Kansas. We've had a lot of rain. I cant go out without spray on, but it doesn't seem to help with the flys. Also the price of the spray has doubled this year.

Waterman, IL(Zone 5a)

I feel your pain. What's going on at your neighbors? Even if you keep your yard clear of doggy droppings and other fly loving stuff, if your neighbors aren't cleaning up, you're going to get flies.

It used to be really bad here too. The guy across the road raised rabbits and never cleaned their cages. We had so many flies, we couldn't go outside. When they moved, and the new people cleaned up the barn, the fly problem stopped.

Horse spray works good and there is also a spray for barns. Those vermin drop dead in their tracks. I don't know about putting horse spray on your skin though. Works great on a horse. Read the label. I use a barn spray in the house and then go outside for a while. We get asian ladybugs by the thousands in the fall (thank you USDA). I used to vaccum them up, but the barn spray was a life saver. It's stinky, but it beats the heck out of having a vaccum cleaner next to you all day. It works on boxelder bugs too. Hate those things!

Anza, CA(Zone 8b)

Hi, there is a spray that I used when I live right next to a dairy farm-you don't know fly infestation until you've dealt with that! Anyway the spray is rated food prep safe, it's used in public place and restaurants, and if you really want to get into it there is a battery operated box that will dispense the spray at pre-set intervals. If you just want to spray it yourself, that works very well too-instantaneously. The product is called Clean Air Purge, and there is a web site www.CBProProducts.com. I pick mine up at a local feed/vet supply place. It really works very well.

Waterman, IL(Zone 5a)

That's the same stuff I use. Works great. Got it at Farm & Fleet. I forgot to mention the guy across the street also had cattle that were kept knee deep in manure and he kept chickens in his basement. So glad they moved.

Bastrop, TX(Zone 8b)

Sounds like a great spray! Thanks so much for the info on it. I'll have to try it.

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