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I have a problem with early blight in my tomatoes. I have tried all the standard treatments, including chemicals. I have read several articles about solarizing the soil by covering a row with clear plastic. Starting a month ago I tilled a row and covered it with clear plastic. I now have weeds growing under the plastic. Should I take the plastic up and spray the weeds with Roundup ? I understand that in TN I probably got a late start so the temp is not high enough. Any hints would be helpful. Thanks
 

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I wouldn’t. I have had bad results using Round Up on anticipated garden areas.
 

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I wouldn’t. I have had bad results using Round Up on anticipated garden areas.
Thanks Alice- I prefer not to use it anywhere near my garden. but I worry that the weeds under the plastic will go to seed, and create a bigger problem. Maybe I don't need to do anything. Hope the heat kills the seed.
 

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They will likely wither.
 

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For best results. July--August would be the time in Tennessee to solarize, so you can get high enough soil temperature down deep. Otherwise, you have created a good weed seed germination tent. You may get some good out of solarization, but remember that early blight overwinters on left over tomato plant debris. So, you have to really rake and burn the stems and leaves(leave them out of the compost--and any rotten, or green ones, plus any peelings, cores, seeds from your table or canning.....) Or left on your hoes, collecting baskets----AND, any seeds that you are thinking about saving for next year. How about your gloves???

So, with early blight, you may have your hands full. Best to start with at least a two year rotation to fresh soil, clean up as much as you can from last year, keep it out of your compost pile, use certified or tested seeds if you start your own(there are techniques of boiling that you can learn), finding resistant varieties, using lots of fertile compost to get good healthy plants to begin with, mulch for the weed control, and take a look at using Serenade spray--it will suppress EB.

Hope this helps,

geo
 

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For best results. July--August would be the time in Tennessee to solarize, so you can get high enough soil temperature down deep. Otherwise, you have created a good weed seed germination tent. You may get some good out of solarization, but remember that early blight overwinters on left over tomato plant debris. So, you have to really rake and burn the stems and leaves(leave them out of the compost--and any rotten, or green ones, plus any peelings, cores, seeds from your table or canning.....) Or left on your hoes, collecting baskets----AND, any seeds that you are thinking about saving for next year. How about your gloves???

So, with early blight, you may have your hands full. Best to start with at least a two year rotation to fresh soil, clean up as much as you can from last year, keep it out of your compost pile, use certified or tested seeds if you start your own(there are techniques of boiling that you can learn), finding resistant varieties, using lots of fertile compost to get good healthy plants to begin with, mulch for the weed control, and take a look at using Serenade spray--it will suppress EB.

Hope this helps,

geo
Thanks Geo- My garden is 50'x50', so I can't rotate too much. However, I have done a 2 year rotation of tomatoes , but the blight gets the tomatoes where ever I plant them. I put cardboard and straw around my plants, and start using chemicals (although I hate it) upon planting before any signs of blight. I hope solar works. I will keep the clear plastic on the row all winter. Next spring I will try tomatoes in that row, but I'm not optimistic. I will move the plastic to another row where it will stay all summer. Thanks so much for the advice. I will try Serenade next year. It's about the only chemical I haven't used. Any additional advice will always be appreciated. I've been gardening for over 50 years, so you can tell hoe frustrated I am.
 

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I wonder if people have any success against blight by solarizing a garden ?
Alice- I have read several articles that give me hope that it works. However I also read several articles that say certain chemicals work, but I didn't have success. I think Geo is right that I got started too late this year so I fear the EB will be back next year.
 
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