Brown Flowers on Tomato Plants - Knowledgebase Question

Vienna, VA
Question by SuznShrnk
July 9, 1998
I am new to vegetable gardening and I've noticed that the yellow flowers on the top of my tomato plants are turning brown. I have some beautiful large tomatoes lower down on the same Better Boy plants. Is the browning of the flower a normal process before the tomato emerges that perhaps I did not notice before? It does not seem like the blossom end rot that I've been reading about which seems to affect the tomato. Whatever you could tell me would be very useful.


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Answer from NGA
July 9, 1998

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With hot, humid, rainy weather comes disease...so I wouldn't be surprised if your plants are suffering some sort of blight. However, it could be other things too. The flower does wilt and drop once it's been pollinated, so keep your eyes out for tiny tomatoes. Excessive heat (above 90) will cause flowers to drop before developing fruit, so if the rest of the plant looks fine and you've had hot weather, that could be it. If so, once the weather cools things should get back to normal. I'd leave the plant as is, and see what develops. Keep an eye on the foliage--if you see spotting or browning on the leaves, that would indicate it is indeed disease. I hope not!

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