help, my tomato plants are dying

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by texastami, Jul 22, 2006.

  1. texastami

    texastami Zone 7B Supporter

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    We planted 10 better boy tomato plants and 2 big boys.... they did GREAT in the beginning... we had HUGE plants - then one big boy started turning yellow and the branches began to wilt and die.... still has fruit on, but they aren't growing very large....

    Now 8 of the better boys, both of the big boys are yellowing and DYING!!! I am sick! I have 25 green tomatoes I have picked for fear of losing my crop - with lots more on, but the plants are dying at such a high rate of speed, I fear this might be my only crop... :( I am sick, I envisioned canning tomatoes for the winter, but its not gonna happen this year!!

    This is what the "old timers" have told me here - (native KS garden growers)

    1. not enough water
    2. too much water
    3. BLIGHT
    4. heat related (however, the first affected plant was well over a month BEFORE the heat got so intense!)

    Anybody got any ideas?? Am I out of luck totally this year?? Can I pull up the affected ones and try to save the last two that don't have any signs? Futile effort??

    I was told I will need to burn all the plants and then there is something I can put on the young plants BEFORE they fruit to prevent blight... if that is what this is.....

    Thanks!
     
  2. Barb

    Barb Well-Known Member

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    It sounds like blight to me. Are the leaves spotty and not just yellow? Try Goggling tomato blight for some pictures. If it is get thee to the garden center and get something for it. Quick! I got mine from Gardens Alive ( try their site for a picture of blight) but it is available everywhere. The name is eluding me but it contains copper. Mine is sitting out in the quanset right now and if someone else doesn't pop up and answer I'll go out and find the name.

    You might be able to save the plants - they will put out new growth. I had blight last year and I managed to get enough green tomatoes by the end of the season that I ripened in the house.

    I took off the affected branches and followed directions. Don't plant in the same spot next year and if it pops up again (if it is blight) get it real quick. I only had to do one application this year to stop it (fingers crossed)


    QUICK Martin - where are you!


    I have an entire row of tomatoes not setting on tomatoes or even blossoming much. If you have a cure for that let me know.


    Disheartening isn't it :Bawling:
     

  3. primal1

    primal1 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I have had this problem in the past and I am convinced that if mulching doesn't help then it is something missing in the soil. I have read before that the yellowing of lower leave can be caused by the plant using nutrients from lower leaves, so it starts at the bottom and works it's way up.

    The one time i didn't have any yellowing leaves was when i grew dirctly in old horse manure and peat which i got from a friend who only used peat in her horse stalls... what an awesome crop that was:)
     
  4. marvella

    marvella Well-Known Member

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    in this part of the country, we have early blight and late blight. not sure what their official name is. i beleive they are a fungus? of the two, i'd rather have late. it seems to creep up the plant, with the tomaotes ripening just in front of it. the early blight affects the tomaotes too, and cuts back production.

    having said that, i think i have a blight free garden for the first time ever this year. :shrug:
     
  5. Cyngbaeld

    Cyngbaeld In Remembrance Supporter

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    I'd pull all the bad plants out and take cuttings from the two good ones. Root the cuttings and set them out and they should go right to bearing for you. When I've rooted cuttings before there was not the long wait that I'd get with seedlings.
     
  6. skruzich

    skruzich Well-Known Member

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    Copper sulphate. You can get it at wallyworld or the cd-op. Gardens alive is way overpriced on the stuff and you have to pay for shipping for the exact same product.
    BUT copper sulphate won't cure the plants once you get blight. You have to spray them before they get blight and keep spraying on a schedule. PLUS youcannot spray toomuch or the soil will have too much copper salts in it.

    These are the fungicides that will control blight.
    select one of the following fungicides: chlorothalonil, fixed copper, maneb or mancozeb. Follow the directions on the label.
     
  7. skruzich

    skruzich Well-Known Member

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    the disesase is Phytophthora infestans
     
  8. Paquebot

    Paquebot Well-Known Member

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    Another favorite cure for many fungal diseases is Daconil. For southern tomato growers, that seems to be almost automatic. In Tami's situation, the symptoms are similar to various diseases. The wilting branches could indicate something more serious than early blight. With many of the less nasty foliar diseases, one needs merely to remove the infected leaves. Hard to do that when the entire plant is infected.

    Here's some descriptions of various tomato diseases: http://hgic.clemson.edu/factsheets/HGIC2217.htm

    For Barb, your weather may be part of the non-fruiting problem. If it's been too hot, and you planted late, your plants won't set fruit. Tomato pollen melts at around 80F. Or they may be a very late variety. No such problem for any of my 40+ varieties. All either are loading up with large fruit or busy making tons of small ones.

    Martin
     
  9. Barb

    Barb Well-Known Member

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    Martin, I didn't plant late but the weather went hot early, real hot (pushing 100's now for weeks) so that may be it. But it's the Wisconson's, Long Tom's and John Baer's that are not setting on fruit or even blossoming much. The Roma, Super Fantastic, Beef Master, Jet Star & Celebrity at least have SOME tomatoes probably set when it was cooler. The cherry tomatoes have some fruit and now lots of blossoms - even the one I planted the beginning of July.

    Sigh! I need tomatoes this year very bad. :help: I've had four years of drought and this is my first year to have something besides rainwater to water them with. I had such hopes. The heat is probably why a lot of the garden isn't setting fruit like it should.

    Is there hope if it cools down and I can keep them alive this fall?
     
  10. woodspirit

    woodspirit Well-Known Member

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    There are several types of wilt. They occur in the soil and there isn't any sprays that you can use for them. The only "chemical way to deal with wilt is to have the soil fumigated. That requires hiring someone who is licensed to apply it. Not really worth it. It will kill everything in the soil, and you wouldn't be able to plant anything for about a year. Wilt affects trees and other plants besides vegetables. It is a vascular type of problem. That's why it is not a good idea to plant tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, etc in the same place from year to year. Many times you will discover it when planting a new garden too. You see it quite often with Rhododendrons. Always start with plants that are resistant to begin with. It doesn't mean that the plants can't get it, but it does help. I have had tomatoes get it and grow beyond the wilt and keep producing. The wilted portions continued to be wilted, but the growth that occured after that was fine and actually was resistant to getting it. Many times trees will grow beyond the wilt, however rhody's generally don't because they are so slow growing. Copper is used to treat plants that have bacterial diseases so it won't help for this problem, if it is wilt. Neither will other fungicides. If the lower leaves only are yellowing, then that is too much water and not enough sun.