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I am David Epstein. This is Growing Wisdom. We are standing in my vegetable garden, not a big vegetable garden, but growing I am growing tomatoes of course, these are from the store, still early to get tomatoes out of the garden, but I am hoping for some that look at least this good. The problem is, is that I get some diseases on some of the leaf starting to show up already, and tomato diseases. You know there are so many of them; it is really difficult to figure out exactly what is really gong on with the tomatoes. Your whole plant can start to decline. You can also have problems with the crown area, down by the ground. You can have problems with the leaf area, which I think where the more common problems and also the fruit. Now, we do not have any fruit yet, so we are really focusing on the leaves today.
I think I have two problems going on with my particular tomatoes and leaves. One is early blight and the other is bacterial spot. One is a fungus and one is a bacteria. The bacterial spot looks like little dots that eventually turn black and will actually fall out leaving a hole in the leaf. Copper sprays work pretty well in controlling this. When spraying, you really want to be sure to get both the upper and lower parts of the leaf. Also, weed around the area that will help. And, crop rotation is also another big help for some of that bacterial spot.
If you have a small garden like me, it becomes very difficult to rotate very far. Your garden is so small, how can you rotate the tomatoes? So again, a copper treatment can work real well in treating these particular diseases. If you noticed, the leaves are beginning to turn yellow and you also have this brown circular spots, almost looking like a bull’s eye that is one of the indications that this is perhaps early blight. Any time you have a disease of the leaves that is a fungus origin, you want to treat it with the fungicide. And, I like to use some of the organic fungicide, like a bacillus. There are certain bacillus out there and if you go to your local garden center, and ask for organic fungicide. You can find that.
Now, some of these diseases are really mimic each other and you almost have to be a professional tomato grower to identify exactly what is it. If you go to this websites, what you will find are basically diagnostic tool, so that you can look at the pictures and look at your own tomatoes and figure out what is going on in your particular garden. I think that one of the best things that you can do in order to keep your tomatoes healthy throughout the growing season is inspect them regularly. Because, it is impossible for me in a two and a half minute video to diagnose your tomatoes at home, but when you see things like these, the yellowing of the leaves, brown spots are starting to show up that tends to be a disease rather than an insect.
Now of course, there are plenty of insects that can be attacking your tomatoes and we will save that for another segment. Come back every week for all our tips, hints and helps at GrowingWisdom.com.