Identification Of Tomato Plants With Blight
Tomato plants are one of the most popular vegetables in our country. They are used to make many different types of sauces, soups, salads and other dishes.
These plants have been cultivated since ancient times. There are several varieties of tomato species which produce various colors: red, yellow, orange or purple. Most commonly known as tomato is Lycopersicon esculentum (commonly called tomato). It is one of the most widely grown vegetables in the world.
The leaves and stems of tomato plants are edible, but they contain toxins that cause blossom end rot. Blight occurs when these toxins accumulate in the fruit, causing it to turn brown and fall off the plant.
Blight can occur at any stage during growth; however, blight usually begins affecting fruits after flowering has occurred. Blight symptoms include stunted growth, wilting and death.
Symptoms Of Tomato Plant Disease
Blossom end rot is caused by a bacterial infection of the fruit tissue. Symptoms vary depending upon the type of tomato plant disease being present.
However, all tomato plants infected with blight will exhibit some or all of the following symptoms:
Stunted growth due to reduced chlorophyll production.
Wilting of leaves and dead, brown leaves.
Leaves turn yellow between the veins.
Flower drop and infertility of plants.
General wilting of the plant.
Small, discolored spots appear on the fruit, slowly developing into large cavities.
The top of the fruit dries out and turns dark or black. This is commonly known as blossom end rot.
In advanced stages, the fruit becomes hard and inedible.
Common causes of tomato plant disease:
Abnormal amount of nitrogen during plant growth.
Excessive watering or insufficient drainage of soil.
Tight spacing causes waterlogging issue.
Insufficient sunlight causes plants to grow too slowly to develop fruits properly.
Soil-borne bacteria or fungi.
Viruses that affect plants during all stages of growth.
Tomato plants are also susceptible to whitefly and aphids. These insects pierce the stems and suck out plant juice.
This causes the leaves to turn a silvery color and drop off the plant. In addition, these insects can spread disease and viruses among plants.
Prevention And Treatment For Blossom End Rot
Drenching tomato plants with a fungicide during the first three weeks after planting can prevent blossom end rot from occurring. Fungicides containing chlorine help prevent root rot disease.
These include copper hydroxide, Captan and Tomebene. However, copper is toxic to humans and animals in high concentrations; it may also discolor plumbing fixtures.
Drenching the soil with seaweed extract also helps prevent blossom end rot. Seaweed is rich in iron, a mineral that is essential for tomato plants to thrive.
Tomato plants are susceptible to waterlogging. If you live in a rainy area, then make sure you provide adequate drainage around each plant.
This will prevent the roots from sitting in water for long periods of time. Root rot is more likely to occur after heavy rains.
Proper spacing is crucial to prevent tomato plant disease. If the plants are spaced too close together, the growth of each plant will be stunted.
This is because there will not be enough room for each plant to grow and develop properly. In addition, the roots of each plant will intertwine, which can lead to problems with fungus diseases. Tomato blossom rot can also occur if the plants are placed too close together. Since there is no room for the fruits to fully develop, they remain small.
Tomatoes need a lot of sunlight to grow properly and this can be a challenge if you live in an area that gets a lot of overcast weather throughout the year. If sunlight is scarce, then artificial lighting will help tomatoes thrive.
In addition, it is also essential to maintain proper soil conditions. The soil should be loose, porous and deep. This allows the roots to spread out as far as they need to and helps prevent waterlogging and fungus diseases.
Prevention And Treatment For Viral Diseases
Viral diseases are less common in tomato plants. However, they can still occur if your plant comes into contact with a diseased plant or if you purchase a diseased plant from a nursery or garden center.
There is no cure for viruses that affect tomato plants. It is essential to immediately discard infected plants so the virus does not spread.
Growing tomatoes in containers can help prevent the spread of disease because you can simply discard the pot and replace it with a new one. Also, make sure you purchase tomato plants from reputable nurseries or garden centers.
Prevention And Treatment For Fungal Diseases
Fungal diseases such as root rot and blight are also serious tomato plant diseases.
Like viral diseases, there is no cure for these fungal diseases. It is essential to immediately remove and discard plants that show signs of fungal infection.
Growing tomatoes in containers can help prevent the spread of fungus because you can simply discard the pot and replace it with a new one. Make sure you purchase tomato plants from reputable nurseries or garden centers; this will reduce the chances of introducing disease to your healthy tomato plants.
Prevention And Treatment For Other Diseases
Leaf spot is a common disease that affects tomato plants. It causes dark spots to form on the leaves.
There is no cure for leaf spot, however it is not considered to be a serious disease because it does not kill the plant. Leaf spot rarely affects plants that are grown in containers or those planted in fresh soil each year.
Crown rot affects the roots of tomato plants. It causes the roots to become rotten and black.
Crown rot can be difficult to treat because it is caused by a fungus that lives in the soil. Killing the fungus on the roots may not be enough if the fungus still exists in the soil. It can also be challenging to prevent crown rot from spreading to healthy plants because the fungus lives in the soil.
Prevention And Treatment For Environmental Diseases
Environmental diseases are caused by certain environmental conditions, such as weather conditions.
Frost damage occurs when plants are exposed to frost. It can cause the leaves to turn yellow and dry up.
Burrowing insects, such as snails and slugs, can cause permanent damage to plants by eating away at the roots.
Snow mold occurs when there is a lot of snowfall or when plants are covered in snow for an extended period of time. Snow mold causes the plant’s stems to turn black and the plant eventually dies.
Tip #1: Rotate your plants each year to a new area within the garden. This will help prevent disease from affecting all your plants.
It will also help prevent the soil from becoming nutrient deficient.
Tip #2: Clean garden tools and equipment before and after use. You can clean them by dipping them in a bleach and water solution or burning them separately to sterilize them.
Tip #3: Purchase disease-free seeds, plants and replacements. This will reduce your chances of introducing diseases into your garden.
Tip #4: Discard plants that show signs of disease. It is essential to immediately discard diseased plants so the diseases do not spread to other plants in the garden.
Make sure you dispose of plants properly; don’t just throw them in the garbage.
Tip #5: Avoid planting tomatoes in the same area each year. It is essential to rotate your tomato plants each year.
This is the best way to prevent soil-borne diseases from affecting your plants.
Tip #6: Prepare your soil properly by adding organic matter, such as manure or compost. This will improve the quality of your soil and increase its ability to hold moisture.
Investing a little time and money into preparing your soil properly can help prevent many common tomato diseases.
Tip #7: Apply mulch around your plants. Mulch is basically any material that you spread around the base of your plants.
It serves a few purposes; it helps to conserve moisture, it helps prevent weeds from growing and it enhance the look of your garden.
Tip #8: Remove and destroy infected plants as soon as possible. As soon as you notice something is wrong with one of your plants, you need to quickly remove it from the garden to prevent the disease from spreading.
To kill the disease, either throw it into the trash or put it through a burning process.
Tip #9: Purchase resistant tomato varieties. Certain varieties of plants are more resistant to disease than others.
If you have a choice between two varieties of tomatoes that have the same characteristics, pick the one that is more resistant to diseases.
Tip #10: Water your plants deeply but less frequently. Watering your plants deeply but less frequently allows the roots to suck up all the moisture they need and prevents issues with diseases.
The best way to water your plants deeply is to use a soaker hose or drip irrigation.
Tip #11: Choose the best location for your plants. Avoid planting your plants in low-lying areas where water naturally collects.
This will only serve to spread existing diseases and pests into your garden.
Tip #12: Purchase disease-free plants and seeds. Disease often spreads from nursery plants to home gardens so it’s very important to buy only the healthiest plants for your garden.
Tip #13: Build a healthy soil. If you have a small garden, it’s not really worth building healthy soil since the benefits won’t last long enough.
However, if you have a large garden or are planning to expand in future, then it’s well worth building a good soil from the start so that your plants can grow disease and pest-free.
Tip #14: Keep your garden free of weeds. Weeds steal nutrients and water that would otherwise go to your plants, so it’s important to keep your garden free of weeds.
They also provide havens for insects and can even harbor diseases that can harm your plants.
Tip #15: Plant flowers among your vegetables. Flowers attract bees which will cross-pollinate the vegetables in your garden, reducing the chances of them becoming diseased.
Tip #16: Buy beneficial insects. Some insects are carnivores, eating the eggs of other insects.
To protect your plants from pest invasions, you can purchase and release these carnivorous insects into your garden.
Tip #17: Surround your garden with predator nematodes. You can also buy and release certain types of nematodes that kill other pesky garden insects such as cutworms and corn rootworms.
Tip #18: When in doubt, apply common sense. If you’re noticing something wrong with your plants and don’t know what’s causing it or how to fix it, it’s best just to not do anything.
Common sense will solve a lot of garden problems!
The most important thing to keep in mind when it comes to preventing and treating diseases and pests is not to panic. These issues arise whenever you have living plants and there’s no way to completely avoid them, so you just have to stay calm and be prepared.
Sources & references used in this article:
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A cellular hypothesis for the induction of blossom-end rot in tomato fruit by LC Ho, PJ White – Annals of Botany, 2005 – academic.oup.com
Blossom-end rot of tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.)—a calcium-or a stress-related disorder? by MC Saure – Scientia horticulturae, 2001 – Elsevier
Effects of environment on the uptake and distribution of calcium in tomato and on the incidence of blossom-end rot by P Adams, LC Ho – Plant and soil, 1993 – Springer
Pseudomonas sp. LSW25R, antagonistic to plant pathogens, promoted plant growth, and reduced blossom-end rot of tomato fruits in a hydroponic system by SW Lee, IP Ahn, SY Sim, SY Lee, MW Seo… – European journal of …, 2010 – Springer
Improvement of tomato fruit quality by calcium nutrition by LC Ho, DJ Hand, M Fussell – … on Growing Media and Hydroponics 481, 1997 – actahort.org
The susceptibility of modern tomato cultivars to blossom-end rot in relation to salinity by P Adams, LC Ho – Journal of Horticultural Science, 1992 – Taylor & Francis
The Effects of saline water drip irrigation on tomato yield, quality, and blossom-end rot incidence—A 3a Case Study in the South of China by Y Zhai, Q Yang, M Hou – PloS one, 2015 – journals.plos.org