One of the most prevalent difficulties when producing your own tomatoes is blossom end rot. All seems well while you’re watching those tiny fruits grow larger by the day and slowly ripen. But then you discover a blackened soft patch on the bottom side of a tomato. Blossom end rot has arrived. Take heart, tomato fans: this isn’t the end of the tale. Yes, you may have to compost any fruit that has already been contaminated. But still developing tomatoes on healthy plants can become perfect slicers for your next with these four tips.
What causes blossom end rot?
The cause of tomato blossom end rot is neither an insect or a disease. This tomato disease, also known as bottom rot, is caused by a calcium deficiency produced by dry weather. Calcium is required by tomato plants in all actively developing portions, from the roots to the fruits. Water transports calcium from one location to another. When water is in short supply, such as during a drought, calcium can’t get all the way from the roots to developing fruit so blossom end rot occurs.
Maybe you’ve heard of calcium-boosting home remedies like planting your tomatoes with antacid tablets or egg shells in the holes to avoid blossom end rot. Although these materials will not harm your plants, they are unlikely to make much of a difference since most soil already has sufficient of calcium. The larger concern is a lack of water to transport the calcium to the fruit. However, a soil test will reveal if calcium or other essential plant nutrients are lacking.
Since all sections of the plant are quickly expanding and calcium is in great need, the first tomatoes of the season are the most vulnerable. As the plant moves calcium up from its roots, stems and leaves will use it up first, so occasionally there won’t be enough left for the ripening fruit, resulting in black, mushy blossom end rot.
How to Prevent Blossom End Rot
The good news about blossom end rot is that it does not mean the end of your much-anticipated tomato crop. It is not infectious; a tomato with symptoms will not “share” the condition with a neighbor. There is no effective chemical control, such as fungicide. This form of tomato rot is merely a problem that normally cures itself when your plants are exposed to regular soil moisture. Employ these four suggestions to help avoid blossom end rot.
1. Keep tomato plants well watered.
Tomatoes thrive with an inch of water each week from rainfall or irrigation. Water tomatoes using a soaker hose or a watering bucket to supplement rainfall as necessary. This is particularly crucial when growing tomatoes in pots, since they tend to dry out more quickly.
Test Garden Tip: Avoid getting the leaves moist while watering to reduce leaf diseases. Yeah, rain will clearly make your plants moist, which aids in the spread of illnesses. The more leaves you can keep dry, the better.
2. Add mulch around tomato plants.
Spread a 2-inch-thick layer of organic mulch around the base of your plants. Straw, grass clippings, chopped leaves, and shredded bark are all suitable materials. Mulch helps the soil retain moisture, so your plants won’t dry out as fast between waterings or rains. It also helps to suffocate weeds.
3. Don’t over fertilize.
Too much fertilizer might lead plants to grow faster than they can absorb calcium for healthy development. Blossom end rot may occur as a result of rapid development. The best way to boost soil nutrients is to add a 2-inch-thick layer of well-decomposed compost to the soil prior to planting in spring. The compost will progressively release nutrients while also improving the soil structure. Only apply fertilizer if recommended by a soil test, and make sure to follow label directions exactly.
4. Care for the roots.
Roots are required for calcium absorption, which prevents blossom end rot. To maximize calcium absorption, avoid disturbing the root zone of a tomato plant. Avoid hoeing and digging in the root zone of plants, and use mulch to keep weeds at bay.
What are natural remedies for blossom end rot?
If you already have blossom-end rot, you may mix a solution out of calcium carbonate antacid tablets, milk, and water and irrigate your plants with it regularly to prevent blossom-end rot from ruining more of your crops than necessary.
What stops blossom rot on tomatoes?
Employ fertilizers that are low in nitrogen but rich in superphosphate, such as 4-12-4 or 5-20-5, to lessen the possibilities of blossom-end rot. Avoid deep cultivation around the plants as much as possible after fruit set, especially in dry weather.
What nutrient prevents blossom end rot?
As previously stated, blossom-end rot is caused by a calcium deficiency.
What can I add to my soil to prevent blossom end rot?
How to Prevent Blossom End Rot
- Water tomato plants often. Tomatoes grow best with about an inch of water a week from rainfall or irrigation. …
- Mulch the area surrounding tomato plants. Spread a 2-inch-thick layer of organic mulch around the base of your plants. …
- Don’t over fertilize. …
- Care for the roots.