Tomato & Eggplant Disease

fmcandrewAugust 12, 2012

Need help, I live in a region with hot, dry summers. My veggie garden (fenced about 16'x 24') and has been affected by what I think is either verticillium wilt or fusarium wilt by the look of the symptoms displayed (yellow leaves, started from the bottom, crispy & curled too). I had the problem last year also but rotated the plantings this time (although not far away since the spaced is defined) hoping to avoid the problem. I bought grafted tomato & eggplant plants this year too but to no avail. It has damaged my tomato, eggplant, butternut plants (so far the butternut is ok, I've been removing the yellowing leaves but doesn't seem as productive as was prior years). The tomatoes have produced many fruits but the taste & consistency is not good. I made sauce from the tomatoes instead, cooking them down substantially so I hope the taste will be alright, seemed a shame to throw them away not to mention the cost. The eggplant was fine at first and produced good fruit but the last batch was full of seeds so I tossed them. I grow strawberries & asparagus in the same space which did very well this season. My question is what do I have to do to get rid of the problem, I read I will have to cover the area with plastic film to attract heat that kills the fungus bacteria and let it sit for 2 - 3 years to rid the soil of the problem. Is there a better solution?

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jean001a(Portland OR 7b)

Drying from the bottom up can be due to something other than verticillium or fusarium. That strawberry & asparagus are doing well is further evidence for that.

Although those two fungi are certainly possible, I'd suspect watering issues in a home garden.

How do you water, how often and for how long?
How do you determine when to water again?

Soil should be evenly moist to at least 12 to 15 inches deep.

Eggplant full of seeds may be harvested too late.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 2:09PM
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fmcandrew

I hope you are right about it not being the soil born diseases. We use a drip water system that runs every evening for 30 min. What is the best way to determine depth of moisture?

    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 6:21AM
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jean001a(Portland OR 7b)

Take a trowel, stick it into the soil and look to see how far down it went. 10 to 12 inches is minimum. (now cover your ears because folks will scream about that not being enough.)

I doubt 30 minutes is long enough.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 3:56PM
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fmcandrew

I passed by the local garden shop with a sample. He thinks it's a spider mite infestation by the look of the leaves. He sold me a Bayer insecticide product, said I could use it now on the plants without worry, just remove the maturing fruits first. I am surprised insects like those can do such damage. Like with most things, I should have noticed earlier and acted before it got this bad.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2012 at 7:11AM
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jean001a(Portland OR 7b)

Do you see the mites? Stippling is present on the leaves long before the leaves dry.
Pictures could help us help you.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2012 at 3:25PM
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butchfomby

INSECTS WILL ATTACK SICK PLANTS....BUT HEALTHY PLANTS HAVE GOOD DEFENSES....IT TAKES HEALTHY SOIL TO RAISE HEALTHY PLANTS....WEEDS DON'T EVEN LIKE RICH SOIL...WE AS GARDNERS NEED TO STUDY MORE ON HOW TO BUILD RICH HEALTHY SOIL BEFORE WE PLANT...NO POISONS, NO CHEMICAL FERTILIZER, NO TILLING, ETC...ROCK DUST, BIOCHAR, HUMATE (IN DRY AREA, BURING SOME OLD ROTTING LOG PCS TO HOLD WATER IN DRY WEATHER) HOPE THIS GIVES YOU SOME GOOD IDEAS...ROY

    Bookmark   April 6, 2013 at 7:24AM
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