Field of Science

Wilting Tomatoes - This could be bad

The kitchen garden was off to a slow, late start this year, but finally beginning to look like something.  But now the tomato plants (a resistant variety!) are showing signs of a wilt, probably verticillium, but need to check leaves for lesions.  First, the one on the end of the row, now the next one in the row.  They'll be pulled, but it may not help at all.  Verticillium is wide spread and the spores can last in the soil for years.  And members of the nightshade family are particularly susceptible, and the only possible action is to do some long-term crop rotation.  However since the primary crops in the summer kitchen garden are tomatoes, peppers, and eggplant plus curcurbits, there are too few options in too little space.  Just in case a couple of late tomatoes, also resistant, were planted in large pots.  This may be the beginning of some upward gardening avoiding the native soil for a few years.  There are times when the combination of animal and fungal pests make small scale gardening a rather disheartening enterprise.  Verticillium wilt could also explain the rapid decline of raspberries (also very susceptable) last year that was blamed on the drought. Two years ago several well established trees here and there around the yard just up and died after a sudden wilting.  Replacements have done well enough, but this renews my worries.  Drat. 

2 comments:

PlantPostings said...

I have the same issues with my small kitchen garden. Drat! I did a little change-up with the companion flower plants, but I think I might need to plant Tomatoes in pots next year, too. Wish I had more sun for edible gardening.

Eric said...

I hope this doesn't mean you'll have to change your "quote of note" sooner than you'd like.