Tomato Problems

Photo Source: Tomatodirt.comDuring the past week, we have had a few customers coming in with some of their tomatoes, and they have all had the same problem: Blossom End Rot.
Blossom end rot is when a round, sunken, water-soaked spot develops on the bottom of the fruit.  Eventually, the spot grows larger, turns black or brown and becomes leathery.  Mold also may appear on this area of the fruit as well.
This rot may not only occur on tomatoes, but also on peppers, squash and watermelons due to the lack of calcium in the fruit.  This lack of calcium results from slowed growth and damamged roots that occur in different growing conditions. These conditions include:
  • Extreme fluctuations in soil moisture, going from very wet to very dry (I think we're all experiencing this...)
  • Rapid plant growth early in the season, followed by extended dry weather (Sound familiar?)
  • Excessive rains that smother root hairs
  • Excess soil salts
  • Cultivating too close to the plant

The first few of these conditions are definitely present in our summer growing season.  With the extreme heat and drought that we've had, this blossom end rot is quite common.

To prevent this rot from occuring in the future, you need to try to keep the soil moisture consistent.  This can be done by altering your watering habits, as well as by mulching your vegetable garden.  Also, avoid using fertilizers that are really high in nitrogen or using lots of fresh manure.

For more information on blossom end rot, and other tomato problems, check out Tomato Dirt.com.

Christian Goers