Hot, Dry Desert Heat/Container Plants - Knowledgebase Question

Tucson, AZ
Question by reebokb
June 21, 2001
This is my first time trying to grow tomatoes and green peppers in containers. I used miracle grow potting mix (organic) How do you get enough sunlight to these plants without burning the leaves when the temperatures during summer range between 95-110 degrees. My tomatoe plants have leaves that are yellowing on edges, and my pepper plant leaves are curling and becoming brittle. The new growth of leaves on both plant seem to be nice and green. Any solutions or help would be great.


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Answer from NGA
June 21, 2001

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edges can be a sign of salt burn. Salts in the water and in fertilizer build up over time. Browning usually occurs on the old leaves first. This excess salt accumulates in the leaf edges, where it kills the tissue and the leaf dries out and turns brown. It's important to water deeply and slowly. At least once a month, water deeply enough to "leach" or push salts well below the root zone. Frequent, light "sprinklings" allow salts to accumulate in the top layers of soil, where the roots are, which is bad news. Similar symptoms occur when too much fertilizer has been applied. Always water plants thoroughly before and after applying fertilizer to help prevent burn. Also, if plants are in too much direct sunlight, foliage can yellow and then turn brown, as it is basically "burning." I hope this info helps!
edges can be a sign of salt burn. Salts in the water and in fertilizer build up over time. Browning usually occurs on the old leaves first. This excess salt accumulates in the leaf edges, where it kills the tissue and the leaf dries out and turns brown. It's important to water deeply and slowly. At least once a month, water deeply enough to "leach" or push salts well below the root zone. Frequent, light "sprinklings" allow salts to accumulate in the top layers of soil, where the roots are, which is bad news. Similar symptoms occur when too much fertilizer has been applied. Always water plants thoroughly before and after applying fertilizer to help prevent burn. Also, if plants are in too much direct sunlight, foliage can yellow and then turn brown, as it is basically "burning." I hope this info helps!

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