Tomato stems turn downwards

jiffypop27(MA 6)June 18, 2014

Hello, I am reposting this from the container forum since I was told I may be able to get help here. My tomato plant's stems are all pointing downwards and some of the leaves and stems have started wilting. This happened after 2 days of hard rain and then 2 sunny days. It's an Ace 55 plant and was originally in a 5 gallon pot. I've moved it into the ground now in case the pot was a problem. I've probably just stressed it out even more. Here are some pictures from a couple days ago.
I didn't notice any holes in the leaves or insects on it. I haven't sprayed any pesticide. Does anyone know what is happening to my plant? Thank you.

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jiffypop27(MA 6)

Here is another picture

    Bookmark   June 18, 2014 at 8:50PM
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carolyn137(z4/5 NY)

Look at the plant in back of the front one in that first picture, It's smaller and leaves are turning yellow. I think it;s a tomato but can't see theleaves that well.

I'm kind of next to you in upstate NY and yes, we have had some heavy rain.

When that happened and my plant were inground, there were several low spots in my tomato field that pooled water. First the plants would wilt, then foliage turn yellow and then brown and then RIP.

What happens when the soil or artificial mix gets water saturated is that the plants can no longer get any oxygen

Do all varieties go down ike that? No, b'c not all varieties handle water in the same way.

So I'm suggesting that's what you are seeing with your plants in containers, and I can just hope that those containers have good drainage holes, or have a layer of rock at the bttom and are deep enough,

Carolyn, who has some of those same containers, the round and square sand colored ones, but mine look deeper.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2014 at 9:51PM
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jiffypop27(MA 6)

Hopefully that's what it is. The plant is in the ground now and I'm waiting to see if it will get better. The plant directly behind is a different variety tomato plant, not experiencing the same type of problem. That one is having a few crispy leaves but otherwise is ok. The yellow leaves you see belong to some other plant\weed that is growing along the fence... unless you're looking at the one under the red solo cups (ground cherry)

    Bookmark   June 18, 2014 at 10:35PM
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I am new to gardening in general. Mine are doing the same thing. They have been outside in the ground for 5 weeks. I noticed this starting around 2 weeks ago. I have not used anything on them. It has been raining every 2 to 3 days and sunny every day else. Thanks for any help! :)

    Bookmark   June 19, 2014 at 5:51PM
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Ohiofem(6a Ohio)

Lydamay: I don't think what your tomatoes are doing is the same as the ones the OP asked about. It is normal for some of the lower leaves to grow downward. I just remove any that look like they might come within four to six inches if the ground. This increases air circulation below the plant and helps keep the plant from getting splashed by soil when you water. That splashing is a major cause of tomato diseases.

    Bookmark   June 19, 2014 at 6:11PM
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Thank you! I am glad to hear this is normal. So should I remove the stems that are touching the ground? Because that seems to be quite a few and I just don't want to harm the plant. I appreciate your feedback.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2014 at 9:10PM
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I have a Celebrity that is doing the same thing. I agree with Carolyn that it is waterlogged. That growth is not normal. I have over-watered my container plants also...and the affected tomato is the only one without a wick. Fast-draining mixes are important. I recommend a cheap moisture meter. They actually work well...and you can go down 6-8 inches with the probe. Do not ever think adding rocks to the bottom of a container actually helps. Go to the container forum...and see my comprehensive posts regarding water movement in containers.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2014 at 11:39PM
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seysonn(8a WA/HZ 1)

It is normal for some of the lower leaves to grow downward.

The op's plant has other problem : i.e. th stem's growth end is pointing downward. Unless it is a genetic characteristic of the variety, that is abnormal and that case plant is not healthy.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2014 at 2:50AM
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Ohiofem(6a Ohio)

Seysonn: I agree. I was addressing my comment to Lydamay, whose plant looks different.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2014 at 10:11AM
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