Spindly tomatos?

Scubadiver1August 21, 2012

This has been a strange season. My garden is in the highlands of western Pa. So the growing season is more like New England.

Usually I get a dense jungle of foliage from tomatoes. This year my plants are so spindly it looks more like June than mid-August. They are fruiting their little hearts out, but much if the yield is sun-scalded. I notice that others' tomatoes in the neighborhood are just as spindly as mine.

I use black plastic mulch to stretch the season and to conserve water. Cukes, herbs, corn and dahlias in the same garden have prospered. There is no recognizable disease on the plants. So what happened to my tomatoes this year.

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Black plastic is not the best thing for tomatoes. Researchers have found that red is better for tomatoes.

I'm not sure what happened to your tomatoes. Usually leggy tomatoes are from lack of light. Have you had a lot of cloudy days this summer?

I know I always had plants grown in my greenhouse that had sturdy stems. About 3 years ago my tomato plants grew spindly stems that had to be planted deeply outside. They thickened once planted outside so I knew it must have been something with the greenhouse.

My greenhouse has a fiberglass covering. I purchased a stiff broom and used lestoil and scrubbed down the roof and got rolls of black gunk off of it. The next year my tomatoes grew well, so I figured it was lack of light that effected my tomatoes.

I don't know if it's that is what effected your tomatoes but it sounds like it may be if others in your area have the same trouble

    Bookmark   August 22, 2012 at 5:32AM
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Thanks. I think you are right.

The black plastic is to stretch the growing season, and to act as a solar still. I only get to my garden every 2-3 weeks. It is at a mountain cabin in the Laurel Highlands. Plastic deals with the fact I'm not there to water for weeks at a time. Plus it's waaaay cheaper from industrial suppliers than plastic mulch from garden suppliers.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2012 at 4:02PM
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