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Nov 10, 2013 08:06 AM

Food dropped in a crack... worried about bugs

For some reason, in my kitchen, they installed the cabinets with a two-inch gap between the wall and where it ends. On the floor of the gap, they have tried to fill it with plaster, but did not get very far so it like just jagged edges. Anything small that falls in can never come out because it will be trapped into the spikes of the dried plaster.

Last Night I was cutting raw butternut squash into 1/2 inch cubes and one piece fell into that gap. I tried to get it out with a long stick but obviously just pushed it in further. I'm worried about cockroaches now or even maggots developing. What can I do to prevent this from happening??? Please help!!

Or, I'm also asking: what happens to a raw piece of butternut squash as it decomposes? will it rot and get disgusting or just dried up?

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  1. if you had the cabinets professionally installed call them back to complete the install correctly. have get clean out the mess as well.

    2 Replies
    1. re: treb

      Sorry, I should mention that I live in a rental in NYC. It is an old building and for three years I haven't dropped any food down there. This is the first time...

      1. re: evagram

        Are you my next door neighbor?!?! Hahahaha. Same situation here (aka half assed construction)

        Chill out. If you're really worriesd get one of those raid bait plastic houses and drop that down the crack.

    2. To me, it should be blocked one way or another. Thing is, you likely want it to be esthetic as well as easy to clean.

      I don't know the exact set-up of your counter top or kitchen, but I'd suggest picking up a piece of decorative L-molding, something like this
      and screw it against the wall adjacent to the counter (a construction adhesive (glue) might work as well).
      To keep crumbs out, you can run a bead of clear silicone between countertop and edge of molding.

      This would solve your biggest problem of stuff falling in from the counter.

      You might have a backsplash which would also have the opening as well as the front side of the cupboards.
      The L-molding might work here as well.

      If you fix the problem before anything else gets down there, I wouldn't worry about bits of squash. It'll eventually dehydrate and become somewhat inert.

      1. Similar happened to me - 2 baked Stouffers spinach souffl├ęs tumbled down the same size gap. I couldn't do much at all so I let them petrify. No critter problem. It also was a rental.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Veggo

          helped along the petrification process, no doubt, by the stream of profanity that serenaded their fall....

          1. re: sunshine842

            To make it worse, the delicious smell wafted all around, and I was really hungry with empty cupboards.

        2. There's a gap between our stove and the cabinet in our rental apartment... I try very hard NOT to think about what might be down there because sometimes I cut stuff on the stove and of course little bits fall off and go down there... but it's never smelled bad. They sell fancy covers you can slide into gaps like that to make them more hygienic but ours is kind of crooked so it wouldn't fit and I've just left it be. It hasn't been a big hassle in the ten years we've lived here...

          1. Foam in a can that runs through a tiny nozzle and fills gaps is sold in HomeDepot, Lowe's etc. It's the ideal solution to fill gaps. The foam goes in wet and dries hard.

            As for removing the food piece, I'd drop a bit of dry bleach down the same hole and then fill the gap with the foam product and then if you want tack in a simple piece of molding to fit. Then I'd call the landlord.