Terri
Terri
  • Hometalker
  • Shallowater, TX
Asked on Aug 7, 2013

Help with tomatoes

Mary WardSandra wilsonKathleen Supe
+17

Answered

What is eating my tomatoes? Please help me figure out what is eating my tomatoes, and how to get rid of the pesky varmints. They are eating the bottoms of the tomatoes & the tops still look great! Even the ones high up off the ground are like this. Please hurry & help me before they're all destroyed!
help with tomatoes, gardening, pest control
17 answers
  • Christy P
    on Aug 7, 2013

    Blossom end rot caused by calcium deficiency exacerbated by inconsistent moisture levels. Mine was like this last year, barely got any good tomatoes.

  • Drought Smart Plants
    on Aug 7, 2013

    As @Christy says, the blossom end rot is caused by lack of calcium - for next year, add Dolomite Lime to your soil (a lot!) and make sure you water well, preferably with tempered water (warmed by the sun, not straight out of a deep well). If you have lots like this, cut them off, and maybe that will trigger the plant to produce some more flowers (after you add some lime mixed with soil around the base of the plant).

  • Trisha Roemer
    on Aug 7, 2013

    You an easily fix this problem using epsom salts. One part Epsom salts to three parts water. You may have to do it several times in one week, but that should clear up the end rot.

  • Barbara
    on Aug 7, 2013

    This is very common and easily fixed with epsom salts

  • Douglas Hunt
    on Aug 8, 2013

    As others have noted above, blossom end rot is caused by a calcium deficiency. Epsom salts contributes magnesium to the soil, it does not add calcium.

  • Terri
    on Aug 8, 2013

    So, Mr. Hunt, do not add Epsom salt? How do I add calcium? I'm sorry, but my 13 year old son and I are novice gardeners. Thank you all for your help!

    • Douglas Hunt
      on Aug 8, 2013

      @Terri The best way to add calcium is to incorporate lime in your beds when your prepare them. After your plants are growing you can use a calcium chloride spray.

  • Douglas Hunt
    on Aug 8, 2013

    I just read an article from Clemson University in which they specifically recommend against using Epsom Salts in cases of blossom end rot: "Avoid excessive potassium or magnesium fertilization as these nutrients will compete with calcium for uptake by the plants. Epsom salts is an example of a magnesium source, so do not apply to soil unless a recent soil report indicates a magnesium deficiency." The whole article is here: http://www.clemson.edu/extension/hgic/hot_topics/2009/08blossom_end_rot.html

  • Diane Sterling
    on Aug 9, 2013

    I also use powdered milk for mine! Sprinkle it around the base of each plant when planting and weekly thereafter.

  • Terri
    on Aug 9, 2013

    Does powdered milk attract insects?

  • Catherine Smith
    on Aug 9, 2013

    Hey Douglas, read the article you mentioned. Would be nice had they given some idea of how much is too much??? What the heck? I can't see how that's valid unless your dumping Epsom salts or bananas by the tractor trailer load? You have to have minute amounts of magnesium especially to react with the calcium in order for the plant to absorb it. Hmmm, evidently no biochem majors on that team. LOL

  • SUE
    on Aug 10, 2013

    Terri, I had the same thing happening to mine. I was told to get calcium tablets and put around my plants. I did and it helped. Thought I had nothing to loose. I crushed them and sprinkled around each plant, then watered as normal. Done this a couple of weeks then a little heavier on the miracle grow.

  • Terri
    on Aug 10, 2013

    Sue, what kind of calcium tablets did u use?

  • SUE
    on Aug 10, 2013

    I just picked up some at Wal mart . The ones you would take

  • Kathleen Supe
    on Jun 6, 2015

    looks like bottom rot to me. to much water

  • Sandra wilson
    on Jun 7, 2015

    you can take egg shell and turn them to dust and to water or topsoil when watering just save them in old coffee can you can also do the same with your calcium tabs

  • Mary Ward
    on Jun 20, 2015

    quick look inside that tomato looks like Michael Jackson, with the gold vest, sun glasses and white gloves..

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