The Q&A Archives: Potted Tomatoes Wilting

Question: My plants seem and look healthy and the stems are very green and firm. The trouble is that at about nine to ten weeks the lower leaves first wilt and curl up and fall off. This continues to the top of the plant till the plant dies.I feed the plant with Miracle Grow for tomatoes about every 14 days or so and water when the soil feels dry. The type of plants are Burpees Big Girl; about 12 weeks old; they are potted in 8in pots; with a good grade potting soil.

Answer: How perplexing! From your description it sounds like a wilt problem, but since Big Girl is resistant to both Fusarium and Verticillium there may be something else going on. I would suspect a possible problem at root level; you might dig one up and see if the roots have expanded into the potting soil (or if they are totally crowded and need to be potted up) and be sure the soil is draining the way it should. If that seems normal, you might want to take one to your County Extension (837-1402) for a definite diagnosis.

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