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More sick tomato plants

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More sick tomato plants

Post  boffer on 5/27/2013, 9:13 pm

Five of them to be precise.

I'm growing six varieties of tomatoes in my greenhouse. All of them are looking healthy except for the five plants that are of one variety.
They are Super Beefsteaks from Burpee; seed source is Holland; packaged for this year; the package says they are disease resistant, but doesn't list which diseases, nor does the website.

I'm racking my brain for non-common denominators. Same MM, same size pots, same environment, same water, all are indeterminates, germinated inside and moved to the greenhouse in mid-April. They have blossoms and some small green fruits just like the healthy varieties.








I'm intrigued that only the one variety is ailing. Any ideas?






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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  Lavender Debs on 5/27/2013, 9:15 pm

No, but having the same issue with sheboygins.

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  camprn on 5/27/2013, 9:19 pm

OMG, those look just awful. Shocked Perhaps contact the seed company? Have you ask at the Extension Service?

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  sanderson on 5/27/2013, 9:23 pm

Boffer's tomatoes look like mine! Both in pots!!!

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  yolos on 5/27/2013, 9:28 pm

How about spreading of a disease. It looks like all your beefstakes are in one line. Touch one plant, move on down the line to the next plant and spread the disease. My guess is beefstakes take a lot more caring/pruning etc and you are transmitting the disease as you take care of them ????????????????????

I have eight tomato plants in a row. Planted 4 feet apart, in cages, 8 different varieties. All with disease. I took the leaves to the county extension office and I have Bacterial Spot and Bacterial Speck.

It is a little strange that only the Beefstakes are diseased (unless it is not a disease).

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  boffer on 5/27/2013, 9:34 pm

@camprn wrote:OMG, those look just awful. Shocked Perhaps contact the seed company? Have you ask at the Extension Service?

ROFL I don't see that kind of response from you very often!

Haven't contacted Burpee. The Extension Service here is a little different from what some of you have back east. It costs me $40 to say hello to them. Slight exaggeration, but that's what it costs for an office visit.




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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  boffer on 5/27/2013, 9:38 pm

@yolos wrote:How about spreading of a disease. It looks like all your beefstakes are in one line. Touch one plant, move on down the line to the next plant and spread the disease...

I wondered about that too, and whether I should isolate them. I don't practice professional level hygiene around my plants, so if I were spreading disease it should have affected the other varieties too.

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  Nonna.PapaVino on 5/27/2013, 9:46 pm

Just a guess: the other varieties are more resistant to whatever is infecting (or affecting) your beefsteaks. Personally, I'd keep them confined to a separate "pest house." Water with extra calcium/blood meal/manure-tea mix with some worm castings piled on top of the soil in pots. See what happens. If prognosis not good after two weeks: burn 'em. We assume you are washing up or changing vinyl gloves after every contact with the ailing plants. Good luck. We've all been there. Nonna

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  camprn on 5/27/2013, 9:54 pm

+1 to Nonna. maybe the seed had a virus. that's just weird.
If they don't improve in a week, burn them. :-(

http://www.extension.iastate.edu/publications/pm1266.pdf

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  FamilyGardening on 5/27/2013, 10:20 pm

sorry boffer....some of our tom's did that last year as well....and im worried some will do it this year too....cause a few look like they are on their way...... our toms are all out side now ...on their own....I do not know what causes it....last year we isolated the ones that we thought could have a chance and got rid of the other ones....its very interesting how its just that one type....would hate for it to transmit to your other healthy plants.....

I will check and see but I think one of our tom's might be a super beef.....if so I will check on it and let you know how its doing....and where we got the seeds from.....

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  FamilyGardening on 5/27/2013, 10:37 pm

well I checked and we are growing a super bush which is a container cherry and a Bush Beef a Det-early grows to about 3ft in size and has 8 oz size fruit

so I don't think that's what you are growing....sorry wish I could help more....

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  boffer on 5/27/2013, 10:41 pm

I had a few plants look like that last year, too, but not quite as bad, and it affected several varieties. I let them be, and they snapped out of it when the hot dry spell showed up in July.

It's all new MM; none used from last year.

I had other varieties in the greenhouse a month earlier, but I wonder if the Super Beefs are just more sensitive to temps.

I think I'll isolate them outside tomorrow, give 'em a shot of fish emulsion and general purpose organic fertilizer just for grins, and see what they do.

When it comes to plants, I'm a survival of the fittest type gardener.

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  FamilyGardening on 5/27/2013, 10:48 pm

survival of the fittest is what our goal is too .....but its hard to lose them when you grow them from seed...

I was surprised last year on one of the tom's that looked so bad...we left it alone.....gave it water and food the same times as the others....it produced more then some of the other more healthy looking plants.....weird What a Face ....and the fruit was yummy Shocked

this year we have them spaced out a bit more...some in the ground...some in pots.....some in the SFG bed.....they are out early and not happy...we shall see...

hope they turn around for you when the weather gets a bit warmer....I know that's what our tom's are asking of us....all we can do is reassure them..... geek

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  boffer on 5/27/2013, 10:54 pm

@FamilyGardening wrote:survival of the fittest is what our goal is too .....but its hard to lose them when you grow them from seed...

I must not have been paying attention when they passed out the plant nurturing gene! There's no use bonding with the babies when I want them to grow up so I can kill them and eat them! hyper

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Re: Sick Tomato plants

Post  GloriaG on 5/28/2013, 12:58 am

Boffer,

FWIW - Have you tested your MM? Could this be a mineral deficiency? I discovered quite by accident that some varieties of tomato plants are far more sensitive to mineral deficiencies than others. I can't tell exactly from the photo, but it appears your leaves may have the allover chlorosis and reddish tint associated with sulfur deficiency.

Here's a link to "Plant Physiology - Symptoms of deficiencies in essential minerals" http://5e.plantphys.net/article.php?ch=3&id=289

Good luck,
Gloria

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  camprn on 5/28/2013, 6:46 am

+1 to Gloria

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  jazzycat on 5/28/2013, 4:44 pm

The ones I'm growing in containers aren't very well either. A few of them are getting some spots and yellowing, and the leaves seem a lot more brittle and curling than the ones in the raised bed. I keep clipping the bad leaves off. I sterilize the clippers and also spray my hands with alcohol as I move from plant to plant. Now I have some grey spots on a couple of the ones in my tomato bed that look similar to the ones in the picture. I suppose I could be transmitting something from my clothing though. I was freaking out (shocker, huh?), but I've decided to wait it out and see what happens. From what I've read, sometimes they recover and still produce fruit.

Another thing I've noticed though, is some of the flowering stems are yellowing and dying and not getting fruit. What causes that? There are those pesky little black gnat looking things.

I've decided to use the neem, because I heard back from the Save The Frogs foundation people and the gentleman I spoke with said they just don't enough information about how neem will affect frogs unless it's sprayed directly into their habitat. They mostly just have information on pesticides. He seems to think that if I spray early in the morning when they aren't around, it will be fine, because I only want to spray the plants directly, and perhaps put some in the soil, and it will dry by the time any might decide to go in the plants. (I've only seen them in container plants anyway, and not in the bed.) At any rate, the organization is interested in hearing from gardeners who use neem (or any other kinds of organic techniques not related to pesticides) with any experience or observations they have about how it affects the local frog population, so I will be giving them information on how it goes. If anyone here has any direct information on this, you can contact them at http://www.savethefrogs.com. And I would appreciate that information as well.

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  CapeCoddess on 5/28/2013, 4:51 pm

I have a yellowing tomato, too. But the poor thing has been though the mill with our crazy cold rainy weather lately so probably can't take up enough nutrients. I plan to water it with sun warmed compost tea with a dash of Neptune during the next watering.

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  camprn on 5/28/2013, 6:04 pm

@jazzycat wrote:

I've decided to use the neem, because I heard back from the Save The Frogs foundation people and the gentleman I spoke with said they just don't enough information about how neem will affect frogs unless it's sprayed directly into their habitat. They mostly just have information on pesticides.
Neem is a pesticide. Did you read the links I posted for you before?
Boffer, did you do anything with your affected plants today?

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  boffer on 5/28/2013, 8:22 pm

@camprn wrote:...Boffer, did you do anything with your affected plants today?
I put my question on Burpee's Q&A page this AM; I don't expect to see an answer there.

I looked a little closer at the plants. The worst damage is on the bottom, the middle is a little better, and the leaves on the top third look decent. I'm going to leave them where they are for now; I might move one or two outside in a couple days when we are supposed to see some steadier sunshine.

I fed one plant some fish emulsion 5-1-1. I fed one plant some organic 4-6-3 fertilizer. The other three got nothing but some wishful thinking! Razz


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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  drixnot on 5/29/2013, 4:58 am

Well, I went on a research rampage because I like puzzles. I was a bit bothered that you have only one type of tomato that is affected. Would you consider cutting into one of the side stems to see if there is a brown ring on the inside like this.


Those are examples of a fungal infection... many breeds of tomatoes are resistant, but not all.

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  boffer on 5/29/2013, 9:46 am

@drixnot wrote:...Would you consider cutting into one of the side stems to see if there is a brown ring on the inside like this....

I'm more than willing to sacrifice a few plants in the short term, to gain new knowledge for the long term.

I haven't pruned the sick plants back to one vine as I have the healthy plants. Would cutting a vine off serve the purpose?

I'm guessing I would be able to see the ring with a magnifying glass?

I'll give it a go later this afternoon.

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  CapeCoddess on 5/29/2013, 3:10 pm

@boffer wrote:
I'll give it a go later this afternoon.

I planted out a couple of Beefsteaks so I'm very interested in your results. I'll certainly check on them when I get home tonight.

There sure seems to be alot of tomato problems this year...must be the crazy weather we've all experienced.

Just saw this from Yolos on the 2013 Tomato Tuesday in the Middle South thread:
Bacterial Spot and Bacterial Speck.
Instructions from the extension agency are to cut off the infected leaves/branches.
Sterilize the cutting instrument everytime a cut is made in 10% clorox/water.
Organic treatment - Basic Copper Sulfate, or High Yield copper Fungicide, or Bonide liquid copper fungicide, or Bonide Copper Fungicide Dust, or Dragon Copper Fungicide. I used the Bonide Copper Funicide because I had some left over from last year.
So the bottom 2 - 3 feet of each of the first 8 tomatoes planted are now devoid of foilage.

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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  boffer on 5/29/2013, 9:01 pm

My camera just won't do any better than this on closeups. The stem is a nice healthy looking green, with an inner white core that is a lot smaller than it looks in the picture.


My plan of action: not much!

I have sufficient plants so I can afford to lose a few.

I don't think an 80 mile round trip and $40 for an examination at the extension service is worth it to me for this problem.

Based on past experience, when I did nothing, I'm betting the plants will improve when it gets warmer here.

Just for a simple experiment, I added fish emulsion to one plant, and 4-6-3 organic fertilizer to one plant. I'll leave the other three alone for now.


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Re: More sick tomato plants

Post  boffer on 6/1/2013, 1:17 pm

Regarding my 5 sick super beefsteaks that this thread is about:

frustration screm frustration screm frustration screm frustration screm frustration screm

Talk about a brain fart...

I have a control plant that I forgot about!

dangit dangit dangit dangit dangit dangit

It was quite by chance, that I chose one beefsteak to keep indoors to grow, and not one of the other varieties. It's living in a 75-80° space with plenty of artificial sunshine. It's happy! This plant has the identical variables as the sick looking plants, except for the environment.






I think I can make a logical conclusion that my only problem is that the super beefsteaks are just extra sensitive to cool weather, compared to the other healthy varieties that I have growing.

So I'm submitting my thought process for peer review: Have I missed anything that would invalidate my conclusion?

I'll quote myself when I wrote:Based on past experience when I did nothing, I'm betting the plants will improve when it gets warmer here.
rock on





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Re: More sick tomato plants

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