Tomatoe Cracks - Knowledgebase Question

Topsfield, MA
Question by Redsaltbox
April 4, 1998
Every year we grow tomatoes and when they mature they crack down from the stem and blacken in those areas. They are edible but they always have dark areas.


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Answer from NGA
April 4, 1998

0

Tomato splitting is caused by tomatoes growing rapidly during a hot dry spell followed by heavy rainfall or heavy watering. It can also happen during wet, warm periods. Unfortunately, these conditions almost force the tomatoes to grow right out of their skins! When they can't stretch any more, they split. This is most annoying as you have found. If the cracks are shallow they will heal over. The fruits
certainly are edible - they just look bad! If the splits are deep enough they can be susceptibleto decay organisms(the black you saw). If you keep soil evenly moist with frequent watering and mulch, this will reduce the problem. Try tomato varieties that are crack tolerant or resistant, such as 'Burpee Big Girl', 'Celebrity', 'Husky Gold'. 'Sweet Million' has better crack resistance than many other cherry
tomatoes.

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