Flies are more than just pesky, buzzing insects, they are dirty, disease carrying hazards. Flies carry bacteria, viral and parasitic infections to their human or animal hosts. Flies just by the nature of where they are born, where they live and where they feed are covered in bacteria that causes illness such as pink eye, dysentery, intestinal virus or more ominous diseases such as Typhoid or cholera. Many types of flies bite, a particularly painful bite comes from a horse-fly, a very itchy bite comes from sand flies and house flies can bite and leave large, itchy, red welts behind.Controlling the fly-population in and around your house is important to the health and safety to those that live in and visit your home.

There are quite a few commercially available fly-repellants and insecticides, but most a laced with harmful chemicals. Making a decision to fight these flying pests responsibly is the first step in getting rid of them.

Take Away Their Food Supply and Living Areas

Always cover garbage cans.

Never leave food lying around.

Clean up quickly after pets so flies don't have access to breeding grounds or feeding grounds. These preventative measures will help to reduce the number of flies, but not eliminate them.

Natural Fly-Control

There are a few other steps to take to control these pests. Nature has provided us with natural fly repellents. Use these repellents through the year to repel flies.

Chop up fresh mint leaves.

Place the chopped mint leaves onto a 3-inch squares of cheesecloth or nylon netting.

Tie the ends up tightly.

Hang the mint sachets around pools, patios and decks.

These are especially useful and safe to use around outdoor tables when having an barbeque to keep the flies off the food.

Repelling Plants

Plant sweet basil plants in patio containers.

Place the  containers around your patio and deck to repel flies.

Break off sweet basil leaves, wash them and use them as garnish food during an outdoor barbeque. For best results slightly crush the leaves or rip them to release the fly-repelling oils.

Essential Oils

Use lavender essential oil or peppermint essential oil to keep flies away.

Place a few drops of either on a cotton ball.

Place the cotton balls in the bottom of garbage cans and place them around patio tables and chairs.

Essential oils are available in natural pharmacies, health food stores and online.

More Plants to Rid Flies

Plant lemongrass in the ground or in patio containers around outdoor entertaining areas. You can even break off a few pieces of lemongrass and use it in vases or as decorations to repel flies.

Plant Mexican Marigolds in hanging outdoor planters to deter flies. This method is both decorative and useful.

Pet Tips

If you don't want to clean up immediately after your pets, keep diatomaceous earth handy and generously sprinkle it on any stray piles of dog poop. Flies will not land on it and lay eggs because the diatomaceous earth provides a hostile breeding ground and the eggs will not survive.