3 Causes of Tomato End Rot
Your tomato plants need a lot of care if you want them to be healthy, tasty and juicy! To achieve this, they must not succumb to pests and diseases. One of these diseases is Tomato End Rot, also called Blossum End Rot.
This is a common tomato disease where brown, grey or black spots appear on the end of your tomatoes which grow and become leathery in texture. Unlike other diseases, if your plant succumbs to Tomato End Rot, you can still save the plant. Knowing the causes will help you prevent or fight off this disease:
Number One Cause Is Calcium Deficiency
Calcium is one of the critical elements of nutrient that tomatoes need to grow healthily. Adequate calcium intake by the plant helps your tomato plants’ fruit quality, shelf life and disease resistance. It also helps the plant absorb other nutrients. One main symptom of calcium deficiency is Blossum End Rot. This disease begins as light-tan, water soaked scars on the blossom end of the fruit which enlarges and turns black and leathery.
To combat this problem, apply calcium-rich fertilizers such as composts containing eggshells. A word of caution though, do not add too much fertilizer in one go as this can also lead to Tomato End Rot. To make sure your plant has sufficient calcium, add lime to the soil. Take 2 cups of lime, dig up to 12 inches deep, and add the lime into the soil around each plant. Another way to combat calcium deficiency is to directly apply calcium to your plant by spraying it with a calcium solution. Buy calcium nitrate of chloride at your local gardening store, mix 4 lb. of calcium nitrate or calcium chloride with 100 gallons of water. Spray this 2 – 3 times a week on your tomato plant for maximum results.
Second Cause Is Inadequate Soil Moisture
The type of soil you plant your tomatoes in will determine how much nutrients your soil can hold. The health of your plant begins at the roots and in order to give it the best nutrients you need to give it the best soil as well. With that said, it is important to choose the right type of soil for your tomato plant. A good soil is one that drains well, warms up quickly and stores moisture for drought periods.
In order to keep soil moist, add organic matter and compost. Also, mulching retains moisture in the soil. Mulching is the process of adding a layer of 2-3 inches deep of compost on top of the soil. Not only does it retain moisture, it also inhibits weed growth, reduces evaporation and keeps soil temperature cool.
Good drainage is another factor in keeping your soil moist. Before planting, check if the soil has good drainage by digging some holes and pouring water in it to see how fast it disappears.
Watering your tomato plants properly will also help in maintaining the moisture levels of your soil.
The Third Cause is Soil Acidity
Your tomato plant prefers a slight acid soil to obtain maximum nutrients but if soul conditions are very acidic this will reduce the calcium in the soil. To avoid this, use a fertilizer that is not very acidic. Cow manure is the best fertilizer you can give your plant since it reduces acidity and is rich in nutrients which will help ensure that your tomato plant will grow to be big and healthy!
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