tomatoes - Knowledgebase Question

fort collins, Co
Avatar for tippyone
Question by tippyone
July 30, 2007
my tomatoes are starting to get blossom end rot what should I do to fix it? I think that's what it is (brown on bottom working up)

Answer from NGA
July 30, 2007
That does sound like blossom end rot, a physiological condition caused by a lack of calcium at the growing tip of the fruit. While your soil may have adequate calcium, fluctuations in soil moisture content from dry to wet really increase the incidence of blossom end rot. It is especially bad on the early fruit each summer and in sandy soils. The damage occurs as cells die at the tip of the fruit. In time (and as the fruit grows) the spots enlarge and turn black. So, by the time you see it, the damage actually has already occurred some time back. Remedies include having a soil test to make sure calcium levels are adequate, adding organic matter to a sandy soil to increase its moisture holding capacity (adding organic matter to any soil type is a good method to improve fertility) keeping plants evenly moist, especially during the development of the first fruits (mulch helps maintain soil moisture), and spraying plants with a Blossom End Rot spray (contains calcium) which can usually be purchased from your local garden center. At this point, there's nothing you can do to "fix" the existing problem fruit, but you can cut off the bad portion. The rest of the fruit should be fine to eat. Good luck with your tomatoes!

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