Tomatoes - Knowledgebase Question

Vero Beach, Fl
Question by bartlks
June 11, 2010
I have a hanging upside down tomato plant. It gets plenty of sun and water. The tomatoes are getting soft brown spots at the bottom. My guess is the roots are getting baked because they are facing up. Am I right or wrong. thanks


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Answer from NGA
June 11, 2010

0

While your hypothesis is interesting, I don't think that's the problem. What you describe sounds 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 developing fruit. 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, keeping plants evenly moist, especially during the development of the first fruits, and spraying plants with a Blossom End Rot spray (contains calcium) which can usually be purchased from your local garden center. The tomatoes are still edible. Just cut away the affected portion.

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