Tomato help

sceniccityredJune 30, 2013

I purchased and potted this plant for my daughter to encourage her in her interest in veg. gardening. The plant looked healthy at the store and when potting it. The picture is not at all good, but it has brown edged leaves and some sort of white or greyish spotting on the leaves. It is in a 5 gal bucket with holes drilled for drainage.

I am needing help so as not to foster the thoughts that she has like this "Mom, I am telling you....I can kill anything....I have two black thumbs!"

Please e-mail me at:
Thanks in advance for the great help!

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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Would love to help but I just can't tell anything from that photo and your description could be many things from just sun scorch or wind burn to a serious disease.

Pleas try to post a better picture and an in focus close up of the affected leaves would be of great help. If it helps, since you need to remove the leaves from the plant anyway, take a pic of the leaves after removing them.

Otherwise, based on the pic and info given as is all I can suggest is removing all affected leaves and begin a regular fungicide spraying program on the plant. It will have enough problems to deal with trying to grow in a 5 gallon bucket without having to deal with a disease too.


    Bookmark   June 30, 2013 at 12:25PM
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Thanks, Dave....let's see if this pic is any better. I really appreciate your help with this

    Bookmark   June 30, 2013 at 1:27PM
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edweather(Zone 5a/b Central NY)

What did you use for soil in the bucket? It looks like it's growing. Where are you located?

    Bookmark   June 30, 2013 at 1:32PM
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Hi edweather, I used mushroom compost, the same thing that I gave in my veg garden. My tomatoes are doing great. I left most of thv soil that was in the original and the compost was on the top and bottom. Thanks, Donna. I am in Chattanooga, Tn but this plant is in Huntsville, Al

    Bookmark   June 30, 2013 at 2:54PM
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another pic of the leaf problem....thanks for the great help!

    Bookmark   June 30, 2013 at 3:34PM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

The last pic is great. It is just some minor flea beetle damage and some environmental damage from sunscald.

However there will be problems developing since you are using mushroom compost in a container - never recommended - rather than soil-less potting mix. Bacterial and fungal diseases, drainage problems, and nutrient issues are all possible.

There is no soil micro herd in that bucket to convert the compost nutrients to a usable form by the plants. So synthetic supplement feedings will be needed weekly.

Plus the compost will drain quickly so very careful monitoring of the soil moisture level will be required with 2x daily watering needed as the weather gets hot.

Honestly, if she has a place where she can transplant that plant into the ground or into a much bigger container with a proper mix in it the plant will have a 10x better chance of surviving and producing and with far less work.

Just some thoughts to consider. Also suggest some research over on the Container Gardening forum here for more info on container soils, feeding, and watering.


    Bookmark   June 30, 2013 at 7:21PM
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I second the idea that you need a bigger container. That looks like a 5 gallon bucket - I'd suggest something at least 3 times as large. Give it some room - that plant looks like it's ready to grow!

    Bookmark   July 2, 2013 at 12:27PM
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