Tomatoes not doing well in Memphis TN

catsgurleygirl(7)March 6, 2012


My husband and I have a plot in our community garden and we find that the tomatoes just don't do well and have done especially poorly the past few years. It seems as though everyone we have talked to from backyard tomato growing neighbors to family up in Martin, TN has been reporting that their tomatoes just aren't doing well. What is the deal, can anyone relate to this or have any ideas?


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Not sure, I'm on the other side of TN in Chattanooga, and my tomatoes do just fine?

    Bookmark   March 6, 2012 at 9:33AM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Last year was bad in many parts of the country because of the weather but the most likely explanation for and long-term gardening issues like this is the soil.

Has it been tested professionally? Tests are available from the county extension office. Most importantly what is the pH of the soil? If it is out of whack nutrients provided are not available to the plants and they do poorly.

Has it been amended regularly? If so with what? Has there been chronic disease issues with the garden? If so which disease and is it soil borne or an airborne fungus problem? Are there nematodes in the soil? Do the plants, when pulled up at season's end show symptoms of nematodes?

Without regular high quality amending most any soil will become depleted and unproductive. So the best place to start is with a professional soil test.

You might also want to do some reading over on the Soil & Composting forum here for even more suggestions.


    Bookmark   March 6, 2012 at 10:32AM
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missingtheobvious(Blue Ridge 7a)

In what way are your tomatoes not doing well?

Are you seeing disease?

What was the community garden before it was a community garden? What is the soil like? Has anyone tested the soil for nutrients and pH?

Are you able to water your tomatoes regularly? Do you fertilize, and if so, with what? Do you use mulch?

When your neighbors and relatives complain their tomatoes do poorly, exactly what are their problems?

    Bookmark   March 6, 2012 at 10:32AM
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Tomatoes grow pretty well here in the Oak Ridge/ Knoxville area. I've grown them since I was 9 and almost never had a summer without fresh tomatoes. I think I got powdery mildew once but that was at the end of the season, I mostly lose them to the deer/racoons/possums or whatever else keeps invading my yard :?

    Bookmark   March 7, 2012 at 8:20AM
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