Thursday, 22 May 2008

Tomato Trouble

I've been further assessing the health of the tomatoes this morning and it doesn't look good.

Early blight? Septoria leaf spot? I've looked at pictures and descriptions of both and it doesn't quite fit the bill for either, plus they usually strike when the plant is setting fruit, and these are way off! You can't really see it in the picture, but some of the leaf tips are tinged very blue as well. If I'm lucky it's just a deficiency of some kind and they'll recover when I plant them out in the big wide soil, but I won't get my hopes up. Around half the plants are affected, with a few not-sures, so I've separated them out so that it doesn't spread any further.

So now I'm wondering if I should make a late sowing to replace these plants if they don't make it. By my calculations we've got 131 days until the end of September, so I reckon there's time. And if I've infected the soil by then I could plant them in growbags instead.

I've got another gripe with my tomato seedlings too; they're still tiny! I suspected it was because I hadn't potted them up to bigger containers and they needed more rootspace, but when I received my tumbling tomato plants in the post from Suttons they were big healthy plants but with rootballs a fraction of the size of mine!


So where did I go wrong?!

7 comments:

dee said...

I think growing them in loo rolls hasnt helped. I always started my off in 3in pots with no problems.. Try potting them on into larger pots or those tomato grow bags - i would get them into better growing conditions as soon as possible :)

seeded said...

I've got the same problem with tiny tomatoes. I'm wondering if I didn't give mine enough sunlight or fertilizer, or if the cold from the windowsill in the chilly spring we've had stunted them.

marigold said...

I've heard that compact tomato plants are a good thing. Maybe they put a lot of their energy into making those root systems.

vegmonkey said...

I had this on my potatoes, so i harvested them and have now stored them. I thought it was early blight at first, but could be some form of scab.

Soilman said...

This isn't blight - or least, it's like no blight I've ever seen. Looks more like some kind of fungal infection. Have they been in a very moist/cool environment? If so, that's your culprit. If not, I'm foxed!

Patrick said...

I don't think it's blight either.

Maybe you said this in an earlier post, but here you don't say what sort of conditions they've been grown in. Normal potting compost? Fertilizer or other chemicals? Indoors? Cold frame?

I would avoid fertilizer or any other additive. I would try to get them growing in a warm place with lots of light. I would try to pinch off as much of the infected foliage as possible, as long as you leave enough behind for the plant to grow.

If they have been indoors it could be some sort of damping off fungus or other microorganism. Did you grow it in clean conditions, with sterile growing medium? Using home made compost can cause this problem.

Clara said...

This happened to some of mine and I concluded it was due to getting the leaves wet in sunlight and burning them. I didn't do anything about it and the new leaves have all grown in fine.

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