Return to the Growing Tomatoes Forum | Post a Follow-Up

Who's munching my maters?!

Posted by brianSATX 8 (My Page) on
Fri, Mar 22, 13 at 12:28

Can anyone help identify what pest/issue may be causing these holes in my newly transplanted tomatoes? I'm also curious about the "wilting" on the middle leaf. I've read on the forums about transplant wilt, but I'm not sure.

-Grew plants indoors (garage) in sterile mix for 8 weeks before transplanting, using seaweed and fish emulsion as fertilizer
-Transplanted plants (peat pots) to raised beds 5 days ago
-My seedlings and raised beds are handled organically
-4 of my 8 transplanted plants are showing these issues so far. The leaves in the picture are from a Rutgers, Glacier, and Sweetie Cherry plant. I have another Sweetie, Solar Fire, Celebrity, and Golden Nugget that are fine so far.
-I have sprayed twice (once after transplanting and once yesterday) with a 10:1 diluted compost tea, with about 1 oz orange oil and 2 oz molasses added to the 5 gallons of tea before diluting with water. This is a standard weekly regimen for my beds.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Who's munching my maters?!

Abother picture to show overall health of the plant is seemingly good

RE: Who's munching my maters?!

It looks to me like the middle leaf may have been burned by cold temperatures. In my experience, setting out my plants too early without enough hardening off resulted in that kind of damage.

The other damage looks a lot like Flea Beetle damage. Flea Beetles will eat tiny holes in the leaves, like you see here, but rarely will cause catastrophic damage unless they're numbers are out of control. If you see little, round, black insects on the leaves, those are the culprits. They'll jump away as soon as they sense danger, and are tough to control with chemicals. But you can catch them if you're fast enough with your fingers. I just tend to try and catch/crush them whenever I see one. Again, the damage won't kill the plant, but it can make the plant slightly more susceptible to disease.

I hope that helped!

RE: Who's munching my maters?!

Helpful-thanks! After reading up on flea beetles, I believe you are spot on. The plants looked better today overall and are showing new growth already, so I'll simply observe for now. Have you tried DE before for this critter?

RE: Who's munching my maters?!

Not really sure what you mean by "DE," so it's probable that I haven't tried it. Is it a kind of pesticide?

RE: Who's munching my maters?!

DE is diatomaceous earth. It kills soft bodied insects tat come in contact with it. It's not very effective against hard bodied flea beetles who jump around. As tomahtohs said, flea beetles don't do a lot of damage to healthy plants, although in large numbers they can weaken them. If you want something organic to deal with them, consider spinosad or neem oil.

 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!

Return to the Growing Tomatoes Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.

Learn more about in-text links on this page here