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Tomatoes: Tomato Adventures - Part 3

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MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

April 26, 2012
5:00 AM

Post #9098235

Cricket's Tomato Adventures Part 2 is pretty long and since many of us are outside of Zone 8 I decided to start a new tomato adventures thread that is not zone specific.

I wanted to show you folks my mega sized Black Cherry plant. It's huge. The second picture was two weeks ago.

Most of my plants are doing really well, tons of green tomatoes. The best producers are:

San Marzano
Black Plum
Cherokee Purple (looks like a 1# tomato growing on that plant)
Stupice

The Momotaro is flowering, this plant got started late so I hope it's okay through the summer.

Big disappointments are:
Black Krim
Black Sea Man

The Black Krim is the one I posted the leaves curling and it continues to be problematic. Branches full of leaves that just turn brown and die. I keep cutting off the branches and now it's just a spindly, ugly thing. Black Sea Man, similar. Maybe these large black types do not like this heat. Anyone have good results with these? What else is doing well or poorly?

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MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

April 26, 2012
4:41 PM

Post #9099068

Nobody wants to talk tomatoes? sob sob...I could hike on over to Veggie Gardening and see if I can scare up a conversation...Hello? Maybe no one but me has fruits yet...The black cherry toms are getting their first blush.
JoParrott
Richland, WA
(Zone 7b)

April 26, 2012
5:34 PM

Post #9099150

I would be HAPPY to talk tomatoes-if I only had some !!!!! Mine are just in the ground a week, and looking great. I can post some braggin' pictures soon--but right now all I can do is read and be envious. Anyway, hubby fell and got a compression fracture in his spine, and I am nursing him. Tomorrow he gets Kyphoplasty (injection of orthopedic cement into the compressed vertebrae- it is pretty successful and almost immediate relief.) Say a prayer for him, please. My time in the garden is my biggest therapy for stress relief- and I sure do need it now.
JoParrott
Richland, WA
(Zone 7b)

April 26, 2012
5:35 PM

Post #9099153

I will be back, Mary- I have Momotaros, but just baby seedlings.

dreaves

dreaves
Hutto, TX
(Zone 8b)

April 26, 2012
6:44 PM

Post #9099280

Mary,

I have lots of green tomatoes! Fruit on just about everything. Jet Star and Big Beef are in the lead. German Giant is doing well too. The cherry tomatoes are behind, I didn't get them potted up or planted out on schedule. They do have lots of blooms at least!
1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

April 26, 2012
7:09 PM

Post #9099319

I always plant my cherry toms last. They catch up and will set fruit more readily in the heat them some of the other maters.

My New Big Dwarf has 20+ fruits set and Money Maker has some too. I'm still planting more LARGE seedlings. The main ones are in but then I think aww..just one more. I'm going to plant my peppers in containers this year in an attempt to do some seed collecting.

I still have 3-4 flats of peppers to pot up for this market order (yah...) at the beginning of the week the AM temps were 47* the Tomatillos, peppers, and Roselle just sat there. But this warm weather has really perked them up.
hornstrider
Hutto, TX

April 26, 2012
7:24 PM

Post #9099345

Joparrott...sorry to hear about your hubby...I hope he has a successful recovery...my crop of maters are awesome...maters everywhere. I have been picking stupice, and julliet...I am getting ready to pick my first big beef...my bday is sat, and I hope to make my first sandwich...my rr plugs, and ihort plugs have turned into a mater forest...cp, black krim, big beef, rutgers, early girl, san marzano, amish paste, super plant, roma are are all doing great...I am on my g4, and I have not learned how to post links, but tomorrow I will post a video...tis the mater season here in hutto, texas...yaaaaaahoooooo.

This message was edited Apr 26, 2012 9:29 PM

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juhur7

juhur7
Anderson, IN
(Zone 6b)

April 26, 2012
7:25 PM

Post #9099346

Still 15 days early for tomato plants here,only they are in the ground and growing. More than talking tomatoes I wish to be harvesting and eating them. Could and am wishing to have that southern growing season till it gets summertime(too hot hot for me where you are) . Cherokee Purple doesn't grow well for me. have a few OP that do though . Sometimes I'm believing it's because of colder climate here,only I don't buy that excuse to myself. Always back to practice, practice, practice.
hornstrider
Hutto, TX

April 26, 2012
7:34 PM

Post #9099359

I forgot to mention my indian stripe. I planted three in my front mater bed, and one at the hog farm. These are the plants that lisa from liberty hill, alaska sent me seeds for...lisa they are loaded with fruit...thanks again. ...these are pics from the hog farm...they were planted later than my hurro garden

This message was edited Apr 26, 2012 8:36 PM

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juhur7

juhur7
Anderson, IN
(Zone 6b)

April 26, 2012
7:37 PM

Post #9099363

Ooooooooooooooooooooooh

dreaves

dreaves
Hutto, TX
(Zone 8b)

April 26, 2012
8:28 PM

Post #9099442

Hornstrider, where do you get your pine straw? Is that what you used to mulch in the photo of Indian Stripe?

David
cue_chik
Palm Coast, FL
(Zone 9a)

April 27, 2012
2:23 AM

Post #9099591

I've got lots and lots of Red Cherry babies all over my two 4ft plants. Can't wait for them to mature. I've also got two 4ft Beefsteak plants covered in blooms, but no babies on it as of yet. :(
MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

April 27, 2012
4:41 AM

Post #9099643

Jo, best of luck with that procedure today, so sorry to hear of his fall. Hopefully he will get some relief soon.

hornstrider that really *is* a forest of tomatoes, good job! And happy birthday a day early. Sounds like we're all tapping our collective foot, waiting for the green to go red. I've been able to harvest a few ripe tomatoes from plants that over-wintered: a Glacier (best tasting of the 3), Kimberly and what I think is an Oregon Spring. That last is better than a store bought tomato, but not by much.

Let's keep the thread updated. I'm interested in what works in climates similar to mine but welcome all conversation about tomato growing. I will start more seeds in mid-July for a fall/early winter crop and am looking to replace the Black Krim and Black Sea Man, neither of which did well.

Anybody grow Sioux? I think it was gymgirl who really likes this one. What's your top three choices? Maybe we'll get the same one(s) mentioned several times.

Happy Friday.
Mary - who is still on her quest for the best tasting salad/slicing tomato
hornstrider
Hutto, TX

April 27, 2012
5:17 AM

Post #9099688

dreaves...I get the pine straw from the Natural Gardener, They are the only people who carry the stuff. It's $7.00 per bale. I use it in the isles also.

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JoParrott
Richland, WA
(Zone 7b)

April 27, 2012
6:54 AM

Post #9099753

Great photo, hornstrider- I love the swivel stool-

dreaves

dreaves
Hutto, TX
(Zone 8b)

April 27, 2012
7:21 AM

Post #9099812

Here is my "main" tomato section. There are 30 plants, with a mix of hybrid and OP. The ring around the bottom of the cages is what's left of the mover's plastic that I wrapped the cages in earlier to protect them from the wind and make it possible to cover if there was a frost. I can water by running water at the base of each plant. I need to mulch around the cages still-- I hope to get some pine straw next week.

The close-up is of one of the Jet Star plants. There are several clusters of 3 or 4 tomatoes, all between the size of a golf ball and a tennis ball. No sign of color yet. This group of tomatoes was transplanted March 8. Based on normal DTM, I should be seeing ripe tomatoes in a little over a week. I'm not sure that will be the case, though.

It's clear to see that the cherry tomatoes in the third photo are WAY behind the other tomatoes. They were planted three weeks later, on March 29th. They have lots of blooms and a few tiny tomatoes.

David

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CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

April 27, 2012
7:43 AM

Post #9099844

LOL. I was pre-occupied with making a small pumpkin patch for a large pumpkin. I know= that is a whole story all by its little lonesome.

Jo, hope your hubby recovers quickly. Sorry he got hurt. My husband has two brackets in his spine. I have an idea of what you're going through.

I'm gonna try to catch up on post between my customers. I might be in and out.


Mary...your plant looks great but i really love that wooden planter!!!!!! I been going around here gathering up scrap wood from making shutters and coming up with wood planter designs. Haven't done anything with it yet. Too many irons in the fire. I tend to do that often.
I am current growing the Super Sioux.

hornstrider. love your mater jungle. really nice mater garden!

I have a problem in one tomato grow bed. ( Verticillium Wilt ) The one that has 30 varities in it. I might have to pull most of the plants to prevent the fungus from spreading. I will try to treat it first. Give it a few weeks and see what happens. I know I won't be growing tomatoes in that bed next year.

The tomatoes in the hanging turvys are actually doing pretty good. Their growth has slowed down cause I stopped fertilizing them when I saw their leaf fungus. I was thinking they were gonners for sure but after I pulled the bad leaves off the fungus slowed down. I might start fertilizing them again. We have been eating green tomatoes off those plants and some ripe Sweet Million Cherries. I still much prefer pots on the ground. or the ground itself.

I hate to , but I will have to put a shade cloth over the greenhouse that has the potted tomato plants. Some fruits are getting sun burnt and it will help cool it off in there while the fruits start to ripen. I already cut the tops off all those tomato plants.

I only have 4 Big Beef tomato plants growing in a raised garden in the backyard. They had 4 foot reinforcement wire cages and they have outgrown their cages. I started putting another 4 foot cage on top of those yesterday. The plants are already in a 2 ft raised bed and with those two cages it looks like a tower. I just hope the plants stay healthy enough to reach the top of the second cage. Their growth rate will slow down now that they are putting energy into fruits. It might be two months before they reach the top.

this Chocolate Cherry plant is growing leaps and bounds. I sure hope the tomatoes taste good. That is a vigerous plant. The black cherry and sunsugar are right behind it..
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

April 27, 2012
7:46 AM

Post #9099849

Dreaves! and folks say I work too hard... Look at you. You got it going on.

that is some pretty dirt too.

This message was edited Apr 27, 2012 8:47 AM
MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

April 27, 2012
7:47 AM

Post #9099850

Thanks cricket - glad you found us over here.

That wooden box is what the mesquite tree came in. I have two of them. I just asked the delivery guys to be careful removing the tree so I could re-use the box. It's a 24".

Gotta run, the day has begun. I'm outta here,

Gymgirl

Gymgirl
SE Houston (Hobby), TX
(Zone 9a)

April 27, 2012
8:54 AM

Post #9099921

Mary!
THANK YOU for a ZONE FREE thread! Finally!

Horn,
The garden we love to hate! That is totally awesome!

Mary,
I planted my Sioux out late, sort of on purpose, because of what I saw it do last summer during our drought. Even when I refused to go out and water, this lil trouper just kept on cranking out tomatoes.

Mine have only been out since March 27th and, so far, I have two little china ball tomatoes forming on one plant, and some blooms on the other. Those fuzzy gnats are back, so tomorrow I'll spray with more soapy Ajax water. It worked the first time.

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CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

April 27, 2012
9:04 AM

Post #9099931

I like Ajax dish soap. I add mouth wash to mine too. Its helps with fungus.

1 tbs of ajax and 1 tbs of mouth wash to one gallon of water. I have no evidence that it really works but the garden smells fresh and clean.
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

April 27, 2012
5:03 PM

Post #9100487


The 4ft Big Beef...with the one cage addition...some squash in there, huge rosemary.


Big Beef growing in 4 gallon pot loaded with tomatoes. They won't ripen for another 2 weeks.

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hornstrider
Hutto, TX

April 27, 2012
6:33 PM

Post #9100597

Cricket...now those are some healthy maters.

Dreaves...you have a huge garden...beautiful plants...I really would like to see your garden...how do you like this wind we are having right now?...the wind has given us a break this year..dont ya think...until this week..

dreaves

dreaves
Hutto, TX
(Zone 8b)

April 27, 2012
6:56 PM

Post #9100625

The windcwas killing me this week. At least it was consistent. I had to water, but could adjust the sprinkler to allow for the wind.
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

April 27, 2012
7:27 PM

Post #9100659

Does anyone know how to encourage healthy blossoms to set fruit? I have had blossoms for several weeks, plants are healthy, growing 3 to 5 inches a day, but no fruit is setting yet. Am i just being impatient, or should i switch my plans to just growing tomato vines, and leave the actual tomatoes to you experts?

Ernie
1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

April 27, 2012
7:42 PM

Post #9100672

Enrie, that could be a sign of too much Nitogen. Sometimes they won't bloom but sometimes the blooms won't set. What are your temperatures like?

When you say how fast the plants are growing, with no fruit set, it makes me think too much Nitrogen.
MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

April 27, 2012
7:49 PM

Post #9100677

Ernie, try a fertilizer with more phosphorus than nitrogen. That is, a higher middle number...5-8-4 for example. Instead of 8-5-4.

Nitrogen is the first number, phosphorus is the middle number. Plants need more phosphorus when they are pushing out blooms and fruit.

HTH.
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

April 27, 2012
8:16 PM

Post #9100703

Normally, too much nitrogen elongates other types of plants making the vertical growth out of proportion to the horizontals, and i have not seen that in these plants. I have been fertilizing with some Fish extract from Ray der Phan, and Miracle Grow. I do not know the proportions of either one of those. I have balanced fertilizer here for other things, but do not use it on the tomatoes. I will increase the P, and see if that helps. Temps have been 50 to 60 at night and 60 to 75 in the daytime.

I will see what i can find with a high P component. And i will hold off the fertilzer completely for a couple of weeks and see if that helps.

Thank You all,

Ernie
1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

April 27, 2012
10:27 PM

Post #9100782

Tomatoes in general don't need alot of fertilizer if they are in a good soil. They are a true vine so their growth habit isn't the same as other plants. One good thing is that when you get their fertilizer in balance you'll have big plants that can have even more blossoms.

With veggies you want them to bloom as well as grow, so a higher middle number is good for fruits and roots. Your temps sound perfect.
MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

April 28, 2012
5:01 AM

Post #9100888

Lisa, that's exactly what I just said in the veggie thread!

crickets those big beef look great!!! My San Marzano's have big clusters like that, and the Black Plum too. Come on babies, ripen. DH and I split the first Black Cherry ripe fruit last night. It was so-so. I like a nice TANG to my tomatoes...still waiting.
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

April 28, 2012
6:13 AM

Post #9100975

Hey Ernie. Are you shaking your tomato plants or vibrating the bloom clusters? I also think the growth rate of 5 inches a day shows you have too much nitrogen. The normal average is 1 to 2 inches per day during its peak growth with a normal nitrogen level.
Holding back on fertilizer for 10 to 14 days is a good idea.


I put a shade cloth over the greenhouse with the container tomatoes. The evening sun was scorching my maters. Some big pretty ones too. Hoping i salvaged them. They already had light yellow shoulders. (about 20)

Arrrrg. I am a sucker for growing tomato plants. I have two earthboxes and I will be growing 20 single vine tomato plants for giant fruits.
Big Zac, Beefmaster, Large Red (1500s heirloom), and Delicious. Another monster grower suggested I cross the Big Zac with the Delicious. It's a monster thang. This should be fun and interesting. I can definitely grow single vine tomato plants. My problem starts when I have to cut off the extra fruits so all the energy goes into one special large fruit on that one lonely 5ft vine. I normally don't have the will power to do that.
hornstrider
Hutto, TX

April 28, 2012
6:37 AM

Post #9101017

Hog farm up date. I finally finished the garden. I was able to plant the tomato's on March 11. I installed a automatic watering system for drip irrigation. Last week the pump that draws the water from the creek went out, and I had to go to the farm Sat, and Sun to water the garden. I hauled the water from the creek to the garden in five gal buckets. This was old fashion gardening.

http://s706.photobucket.com/albums/ww66/hornstrider22/?action=view¤t=Tothecreek.mp4

http://s706.photobucket.com/albums/ww66/hornstrider22/?action=view¤t=Tothegarden.mp4
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

April 28, 2012
8:18 AM

Post #9101121

Lisa, the good soil may be the problem. except for the crusting problem, it is the best and richest soil i have ever seen. I have Artichoke plants much larger than any i have seen, Eucalyptus trees next door are 80 feet tall instead of the usual 60 feet, etc. The five inch growth was on the Sweet Carneros, and the plants are very well proportioned. I learned the hard, and expensive, way how much damage too much N can do when i was growing Specimen Ornamental trees on the Nursery, so i am always leery of over fertilization. I will not use any more MG for a while and check the N in the Fish food that Mark gave me.

Cricket, I have been shaking the plants, trying to help the pollination. Not sure they need help from the bugs and bees, but we have had a dry winter and i have not seen hardly any bees or flying insects this Spring.

Thanks,
Ernie

MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

April 28, 2012
9:12 AM

Post #9101174

hornstrider, I loved the trip to the creek. Serious hammock envy here. Any more old hog farms for sale around Hutto TX?
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

April 28, 2012
2:14 PM

Post #9101458

hornstrider,,, i could watch and look at those pictures and videos all day. Looks like vacation to me. yep...i loved the trip to the creek too. Ready to set up a tent!!!!!!!


and wow,,,tomato garden envy. with zinnias and onions and Leeks? and and and. Very very nice.

This message was edited Apr 28, 2012 3:19 PM
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

April 28, 2012
2:20 PM

Post #9101467

it will take me a couple of weeks to see it all...i wont get bored for sure.
Follower.

1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

April 28, 2012
4:18 PM

Post #9101593

Ernie- tomatoes are self pollinating. They don't need insects just a breeze to pollinate, shaking the plants can't hurt but if they are outside the breeze should move the blossoms enough to get pollination.
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

April 28, 2012
5:35 PM

Post #9101684

Lisa, I recall reading that here on the forum, but i also saw somewhere else that having bumble bees in commercial Greenhouses increased tomato pollination by 25%. I am going to hold off fertilizing for a while. The special Tomato food has a lot more N than it does P, and Miracle Grow has 25 N, to 18P, or something like that, so I will try to find some straight P. We used to be able to buy that on the farm, but i have not looked for it down here. We had turnips and beets from the garden, and the lettuce is ready, but Alas, no tomatoes yet for the salad.

Ernie
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

April 28, 2012
6:01 PM

Post #9101718

after dinner tonight, I ate a half ripe brandywine and I ate it like I was starving...I needed that!


sorry Ernie. I thought your plants were in a greenhouse. ?????? sometimes I get lost.
hornstrider
Hutto, TX

April 28, 2012
6:52 PM

Post #9101811

Earnie...bees are not your problem in my opinion...like lisa said maters are self polinating...I have not seen a bee all spring, and I usually have lots of bees hanging around...but not this year...lots of butterflys, but no bees, and my plants are loaded with maters...I do have one plant that I only have five fruit set so far...its a brandywine sudduth...its a hugh healthy plant, but the flowers keep falling offf...maybe its a variety problem...just a thought...I really dont know
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

April 28, 2012
8:10 PM

Post #9101947

Cricket,
I think we all have a problem keeping names lined up with their climates. I have copied quite a bit of what you do, but i am doing it outside.

Horn, Of course, you are right about them being self pollinating, but since they are not being fertile by themselves, it would be nice if a Bee would come along and help them get it on. LOL. I do seem to have the fungus problem taken care of so i just need to be patient and wait until it happens.

Thanks,
Ernie

1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

April 28, 2012
11:18 PM

Post #9102068

Horn-welcome to the world of Brandywines. (grin) With this wind the blooms could be blowing off. There are tons of Butterflies this year. I dont ever remember it being like this.

Ernie-If its a N issue bees wont help. The blooms are getting pollinated they are just dropping. Im not sure of the physiology behind it I'll check later. I know if its too hot blooms with tiny tomatoes will drop also.
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

April 29, 2012
7:06 AM

Post #9102312

Lisa,
I do not know for sure, of course, since these are the first tomato vines i have ever watched closely, but i do not believe it is too much N, since i am very careful using it. From experience with other plants, I think excess N would show more rampant growth and few, if any, blossoms. I have about 20 different varieties of plants here, and the Moto is small, compact, just no sign whatever of excess flush, has blossoms, but no tomatoes. The Stupice is compact, blossoms, and no tomatoes, the larger ones like Carneros, and Brandywine, a little older, have strong stems, not spindly or weak at all, so i just do not know. We have been having some overcast weather, But Mark is closer to the ocean so he has even more overcast, but he has a few small tomatoes.

But, as i say, i am not sure, so i respect all of your suggestions, and i am going to stop fertilizing and see if that helps. I had to spray copper to stop the Septorum Blight a few times, so that may have been a factor.

Thanks,
Ernie

hornstrider
Hutto, TX

April 29, 2012
8:45 AM

Post #9102434

Earnie...Just curious what are your overnight temps?...Tomato's have an optimum temp range for fruit set. I know here is Texas if the overnight temps are above 71 deg's most varieties will not set fruit. That is the reason I plant out early to maximize fruit set when the temps are right. It is almost May first, and the night time temps are getting close to the cut off point. Last night it was 69 deg, and that is getting close to cut off time. There may also be a min, temp, but I don't know what that would be. Just a thought...Now this Brandywine Sudduth is a different animal...I tried Brandywine a number of years ago, and I had a huge healthy plant with lots of blooms, but no fruit set...so I did not try to grow again. I heard the Sudduth was different...well I guess it is since at least I have 5 tomato's on the plant...They better be good. I planned to grow more, but Carolyn suggested I should not so I threw away 9 perfectly healthy seedlings.
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

April 29, 2012
9:06 AM

Post #9102459

Horn, Your comments are the type of bits of knowledge i am looking for. Our night time temps are about 50, day time about 70, and the soil temps are just getting up to about 60. We were having a lot of 80 degree days a few weeks ago, a warm winter, but we have been having cooler weather now for several weeks. Not sure why it happens, but CA always has cooler nights than the inland states have, in comparision to the day time temps.

Do you recall what your overnight temps were when your fruit started setting? I have been finding that not only seeds, but transplants are very sensitive to the soil temps. I set some cantaloupe plants out too soom and 5 out of six failed, but when the soil warmed up, the next six are all thriving.

Thanks,
Ernie
1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

April 29, 2012
9:22 AM

Post #9102474

Ive thought the overnite temps had to be higher then 70 to deter fruit setting. But right now the humidity is really high so that can slow down friut setting and the moisture in the air keeps the temps up at night.

Sudduth and Cowlicks are supposed to do better in warmer temps then other Brandywines but compared to some other tomatoes they are low producing. Horn-if you have 5 set you are doing great!

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

April 29, 2012
11:57 AM

Post #9102651

High humidity can cause tomato pollen to "clump" and they will not set fruit.
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

April 29, 2012
12:43 PM

Post #9102716

High temps are not the problem here today. The cold ocean wind is coming through here, so I am going to put the end panels back on the Hot Box and see if that helps the fruit set. I took them off a couple of months ago because it was 80 degrees.

Lisa, I checked the N numbers and did some calculations. The Fish sauce only has 2% N, so i did not bother including it. Miracle Grow has 24% N, and i have been giving the tomato plants one quart of the solution every other week. That solution is one ounce of MG to one gallon of water, which equals 1/4 oz of 25% N, every two weeks, which does not sound like too much to me. Does that sound like too much to you? I am going to see if i can google up some info on max and min temps for setting tomatoes.

Ernie
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

April 29, 2012
1:07 PM

Post #9102744

I just googled the Fruit Set Temp Range, and that seems to be my problem. Most of the articles said minimum temps for fruit set to be 59 or 60 degrees, with one outlier saying 55 degrees. Since we have been well down around 50 degree night time temps, i will accept that as my reason for not having tomatoes yet.

Thanks to everyone that took time to help with my problem

Ernie

kevcarr59

kevcarr59
BUda, TX
(Zone 8b)

April 29, 2012
9:36 PM

Post #9103358

Ernie, FWIW, just checked my MG Tomato Food and it's a 18-18-21. It's the same dilution as the MG All Purpose at 24-8-16, so it's a bit more P,K than the all purpose fertilizer. I'm looking at the same problem, lots of leaf & height, but not a lot of blooms and a few tomatoes. I'm going to use this specifically the next 3 feedings and see what happens. I've also started using EP salt and don't know if it's doing anything or not.

I've done some fairly aggressive pruning and am doing a lot better than we did last year, bloom & fruit wise, but still think the plants are too close together.
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

April 29, 2012
10:39 PM

Post #9103388

Kev,
Ray der Phan [Mark} brought me over some tomato food fert and i am going to try it, and see if if helps set fruit. I am very pleased with the shape and height of my plants, but want to see some fruit for all my labors. I am not sure now, after checking out so many numbers today, just what the N is on the stuff he brought over, but i am going to try it. I was using the all purpose type so i could take care of everything with the same mix, but am going to follow all this good advice i have received.

I apply it with a 12 volt sprayer and mine pumps out a quart while i am counting to 12, which is the amount i have been applying to plants 30 to 36 inches tall. How much do you apply to your plants of similar size?

Mark also thinks it will be a couple more weeks before fruit set for this area.
hornstrider
Hutto, TX

April 30, 2012
6:47 AM

Post #9103651

Earnie this may help...I found this...

Tomato flowers come complete with both male and female organs and are self-fertilizing. Pollen is shed with great abundance between 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. on dry, sunny days. Normally, the wind will pollinate the flower sufficiently. To ensure better pollination, gently shake or vibrate the entire tomato plant. The best time to do this is midday when it's warm, and the humidity is low. Optimum fruit set occurs within a very narrow night temperature range of between 60 F and 70 F. When tomato plants experience night temperatures lower than 55 F or above 75 F, interference with the growth of pollen tubes prevents normal fertilization. The pollen may even become sterile, thus causing the blossoms to drop. High daytime temperatures, rain, or prolonged humid conditions also hamper good fruit set. If the humidity is too low, the pollen will be too dry and will not adhere to the stigma. If the humidity is too high, the pollen will not shed readily. Pollen grains may then stick together, resulting in poor or nonexistent pollination.
Have you ever wondered why large-fruited tomato cultivars are sometimes "catfaced" but not the small-fruited ones? This is due to a failure of complete fertilization of the ovule. The larger fruit demands more complete fertilization. This is not a disease but a physiological disorder.

For further infomation contact your local WSU Extension Office.
OutsidePlaying
Laceys Spring, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 1, 2012
8:04 AM

Post #9105414

Cricket, those Big Beefs look great! I didn't plant the majority of my maters until April 13-14; I did put some peppers and about 5 tomatoes in around the first of April (couldn't wait!) and then had to cover them up when we had low temps just before Easter. They were fine. I am holding a couple in pots for planting this weekend or next. That will bring my total tomatos to around 12 or 14, can't remember. I give many away to folks in my office or friends but I can and freeze some too. Mostly just eat as many as we can possibly eat!

I'm just a back-yard veggie gardener but love growing different varieties of tomatoes each year. Love this thread and have been lurking and reading for a while. And learning lots from you all. For example, I never trimmed much on my tomatoes except for the suckers. Do y'all trim the lower leaves quite a bit? How much trimming of the lower leaves do you do and when?

I too am still looking for the 'perfect' P-rich fertilizer.

CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 1, 2012
1:48 PM

Post #9105970

I gradually trim off the lower leaves below the first cluster of tomatoes. I don't trim any leaves above that . I remove some suckers on caged plants to allow some air flow through the whole plant. Nothing heavy.
I have 8 large big beef plants that need to go in the ground now and
I have 8 big beef seedlings that I have to transplant this evening for a much later crop. I might just put them in the ground as seedlings instead of potting them up. I already have the 4 big beef in the garden beds outside and I have 8 celebrity in one of the garden beds along with one sun sugar cherry and one sweet million cherry.
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 1, 2012
5:51 PM

Post #9106264

Other than the two pictures I posted the other day, I think its been a while since i posted updates.
Everything is doing gang busters...got lots of yellowing leaves to trim off. I am falling behind on my chores.

#1 first. I want to show you what the Large Red heirloom mater from the late 1800s looks like. It has deep ribs. Unique and interesting. They are so cute!

#2 the Big Beef in cages.

#3 The Better Bush in the 5 gallon bucket...set in the grow bed and I am sure it has taken root out the bottom and it is Loaded!

#4 and that better bush has a mater ripening.

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CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 1, 2012
6:00 PM

Post #9106280

Celebrity

Sweet Million Cherry on the Left and Chocolate Cherry on the Right.

Big Beef growing in 50 gallon barrel of Soil

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OutsidePlaying
Laceys Spring, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 2, 2012
6:10 AM

Post #9106881

Thanks, Cricket, for the trimming lesson. That's pretty much what I've been doing. Guess it was intuitive but I always wonder if it's what you 'experts' do.

kevcarr59

kevcarr59
BUda, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 2, 2012
10:35 AM

Post #9107259

April 10...4 Parks Whoppers and Big Beefs across the back... 3 Sweet 100 Cherry in the middle...

April 30...The Parks Whoppers...Good amount of blooms but only a few fruits as as right now...

April 30...The Sweet 100's with a pair of Mr. Stripey's in the cages...Stripey's went into the bed about 2 weeks ago...


How do they look???



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kevcarr59

kevcarr59
BUda, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 2, 2012
10:40 AM

Post #9107267

April 30...The Big Beef's that were aggressively pruned... Lot's of toms down low and more starting up high and plenty of blooms...

April 30...A little bit closer shot...

April 30...Single plant...

How do they look??

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MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

May 2, 2012
11:06 AM

Post #9107287

Looking awesome kev, it's amazing to me to see such growth in 20 days. Isn't it something? From a tiny seed to food.

How long do you think it will be before you are picking red Big Beef's?
1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 2, 2012
11:18 AM

Post #9107309

They look great! it is amazing how fast they grow. When did you plant them? you may have said and I missed it. Now I dont feel so far behind. lol

Chicket-that Large Red Heirloom is great!
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

May 2, 2012
4:48 PM

Post #9107675

Well, finally, our nights warmed up to the high 50's and i now have four tiny little tomatoes. And, I am just as proud and happy with those little ones, as you guys are with your wheelbarrows full of big tomatoes. But i am sure i will soon become jaded and expect a lot more in the future.

Ernie

kevcarr59

kevcarr59
BUda, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 2, 2012
5:09 PM

Post #9107703

Lisa, those were transplants picked up from HD about the 8th or 9th of April. They were decent size & shape when they went in... Did a lot of pruning according to Cricket's instructions, and they look pretty good. Should have some good fruits by the end of the month... Gonna feed these monsters and get ready for some Tomato sandmiches...

The Whoppers seem to be behind the curve vs. the Big Beef's, is this normal for them? Are they a little slower growth wise than the Big Beef's, concerned since they went into the bed at the same time?? Looking closely at the plants, only about 5 tomatoes and probably 20 blooms on the 4 plants.

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CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 2, 2012
7:05 PM

Post #9107858

I saved myself one Parks Whopper. I managed to hide it from the customers...lol. I have no idea where to plant it.,,,I have never tasted a Parks Whopper. I know I want to do this plant right. hmmmm.

Kev...your maters are looking "p r e t t y" good!!!!!

Congrats Ernie! What a relief. I am always hyped up waiting for my first baby maters.


Lisa====so you tried the Large Red? How big did they average out?
hornstrider
Hutto, TX

May 2, 2012
7:39 PM

Post #9107899

Ernie...you just need to be patient...congrats my friend...you deserved some fruit set...

My season has begun...yahoooooooooo...I have been picking stupice for about a week, and today I had a surprise...lisa I picked my first indian stripe...thanks to you...infact I picked six of them...they look just like a cherokee purple, and taste just as good...lisa from liberty hill, alaska is my new hero...

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CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 2, 2012
8:07 PM

Post #9107935

If I leave now, I should be there by lunch time tomorrow. ; ) You make my mouth water.

dreaves

dreaves
Hutto, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 2, 2012
8:21 PM

Post #9107956

Hornstrider, you're killin' me! Obviously I planted way too late. I'm probably less than 5 miles away and I don't have anything even starting to turn pink.

kevcarr59

kevcarr59
BUda, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 2, 2012
8:44 PM

Post #9107975

Okay, Horn, everybody LOVES a show-off...LOL...
TX_gardener
Brady, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 3, 2012
4:58 AM

Post #9108173

Hey, outsideplaying -- you said "I too am still looking for the 'perfect' P-rich fertilizer." -- can't find earlier reference, so what's 'p-rich' ??
OutsidePlaying
Laceys Spring, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 3, 2012
5:55 AM

Post #9108234

Phosphorus. Also a good K-rich is good for tomatoes. Look for the N-P-K ratio on the fertilizer you are using. The P (Phosphorus) number is the middle number which promotes root growth. I have a good K-rich fertilizer, called Earth Juice. Potassium promotes flowering and fruiting. Nitrogen as most of us know will just make the plant put out lots of healthy green leaves. I forget what ratio Miracle Grow for Tomatoes is exactly, but I think someone had the ratio in a post above. It's actually my go-to fertilizer most of the time.
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 3, 2012
7:51 AM

Post #9108421

I much prefer the Miracle Grow Bloom Booster instead of the tomato fertilizer.
bloom booster is 15-30-15

This message was edited May 3, 2012 8:53 AM

kevcarr59

kevcarr59
BUda, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 3, 2012
8:06 AM

Post #9108456

OP>> I had done a lot of looking and this was some of the stuff I found. Ultra Green makes a bloom fertilizer that is 15-30-15 for blooming flowers, so I figured it would work for tomatoes, since it's got the right numbers. This is a CFR granule. Another option I found at Lowe's was by Green Light and it's a water soluble that's called Super Bloom with a formula of 12-55-6. Lowe's had 2 pound canister and Wally World had a 1 pound...

These 2 Sun Sugar plants were transplanted into 5 gallon buckets end of last week at same time, watered and treated the same. You can see the difference between the 2. Does it look like fertilizer burn or too much water? They both look damp about 3/4" down into the mix. Another question, should I go ahead and purchase a moisture meter?? I'm always worried about too much water in the raised bed and in the containers...

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HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

May 3, 2012
8:55 AM

Post #9108588

Here's a link to a place where I purchase fertilizer that it high in phosphorus - My tomatoes like: "Sunleaves Indonesian Bat Guano High Phosphorus"

http://homeharvest.com/guano.htm

hornstrider
Hutto, TX

May 3, 2012
9:17 AM

Post #9108619

kevcarr59...Everybody has a different right way. Whatever works for them works for them. I side dress with tomato tone, and give each plant a 3 gal. drink of compost tea. Every other week I give a drink of 3 gal. of John's Receipe mixed w/ water at about 3 tbls to 3 gals of water. Works for me.
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 3, 2012
10:02 AM

Post #9108700

Any manure tea is yummy.

I gotta go over to the neighbors pasture and collect manure for my manure tea. I bought some burlap sacks a week ago to make giant tea bags.

Yum...bat dung.

This message was edited May 3, 2012 11:04 AM

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

May 3, 2012
12:20 PM

Post #9108902

CricketsGarden -
Quoting:Yum...bat dung.


Yup, we feed all this cr*p to our vegetables, and then eat them!

I also use chicken manure, fish meal, crab shells, and goodness knows what else from dead or alive animals. LOL

ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

May 3, 2012
3:29 PM

Post #9109126

Kev,

Your plant damage does not look like it is from too much water, but i highly recommend that everyone, growing everything, should have a moisture meter and use it all the time. I carry one with a long brass probe that is much easier to use than the short ones. No one can judge just by looking when the moisture is just right, and by the time the plant shows too much or too little, the damage is done.

Ernie
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 3, 2012
4:25 PM

Post #9109182

sorry kev, I some how over looked your post.

I would think it was either transplant shock or it got really low on water at some point. I cannot see the tip of the plant. If it is healthy up there with new growth then I would say what ever happend to it , it was able to get passed it and move on.

Ray_Der_Phan

Ray_Der_Phan
Oceanside, CA
(Zone 10a)

May 3, 2012
4:48 PM

Post #9109201

kevcarr, the last plant looks definitely like fertilizer burn. Those ferts you are using are very strong for container growing imo.
1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 4, 2012
8:37 AM

Post #9110070

Cricket-No, Ive never tried it but it looks great!

Horn-Glad your plants are doing well, I'm sooo far behind. It doesn't feel like Alaska now but the evenings are nice. Congratulations!
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 5, 2012
6:28 AM

Post #9111283

The hoop house tomatoes are ripening but they have yellow shoulders due to extreme heat in there. The 6 week head start on Spring temps messed up my plans. 6wks!!!!!! Didn't work out like I planned but hopefully the shade cloth will help the other tomatoes. Disappointed but nothing I can do about it.

The almanac says it will be cooler a lot sooner this fall. I would normally start the fall tomatoes June 15th and now wondering if I should start 4 to 6 weeks sooner...

MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

May 5, 2012
7:47 AM

Post #9111342

cricket, how reliable to you find the projections from the almanac?
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 5, 2012
11:07 AM

Post #9111522

Very reliable. We had one extra mild cold front that was not listed in the weather prediction but it wasn't too bad. Everything else was pretty much right on the money.------give or take a few days. But it was so close that you could grow by it.
MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

May 5, 2012
11:09 AM

Post #9111524

Interesting. Is there a different almanac for different parts of the US?
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 5, 2012
2:02 PM

Post #9111663

No mam. The one almanac gives weather prediction for each section of the US. such as the south includes TN, MS, AL, AK, and LA
If you don't buy the book , You can at least get a 2 month advance outlook for free on the website.
this link is for my area.
http://www.almanac.com/weather/longrange/region/us/8
MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

May 6, 2012
6:16 AM

Post #9112407

Thanks cricket. I think I'll pick up the book and check it out.
texasrockgarden
Canyon Lake, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 6, 2012
8:40 AM

Post #9112569

Wow! You guys really know how to grow tomatoes. Not only am I impressed but I am definitely outclassed.

Good job and keep up the good work.
MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

May 6, 2012
9:45 AM

Post #9112618

Now blushing: one fruit on a fully loaded Cherokee Purple - man! those tomatoes are huge, mostly green except that one.

Black Sea Man - I moved this plant, which is in a large container, away from full sun. Just gets sun till about 10am, then bright shade. It seems happier than it was in full sun. Lots of fruit, probably can pick a few later today/

Black Cherry - lots of happy fruit both green and ripe

Black Plum - same as above

Stupice - a real trooper in my garden, several fruits are beyond blush, should be pick-able today, with may still green

Still waiting: the San Marzano's - plenty of fruit, still green

Peron - same as SM

Large Pink Bulgarian - one LARGE fruit, several new smaller ones, all still green

Marianna's Peace - not bountiful but looks healthy

The plants that have ripening fruit are covered with either mosquito netting or that chiffon netting used for petticoats or pot scrubbers, depending on your needs. ;-) The dang birds will get anything with a little blush. Darn 'em...yup, that's what I say, darn 'em...
texasrockgarden
Canyon Lake, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 6, 2012
12:32 PM

Post #9112780

Taken this morning.

1 Black Krim
2 Eva Purple Ball
3-4 Indian Stripe
5 Black Zebra

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texasrockgarden
Canyon Lake, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 6, 2012
12:36 PM

Post #9112787

1-2 Southern Night
3 Muriel
4 Purple Russian
5 Chapman

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texasrockgarden
Canyon Lake, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 6, 2012
12:42 PM

Post #9112792

1-2 Principle Borghese
3 Tasti-Lee
4 Granny's Heart transplanted out yesterday. It's late but it has a bloom cluster forming so maybe we get fruit set before it gets too hot. And then we get seed for next year. A few of these seeds were a gift.
5 Tomatoes growing in wheat straw bales.

This message was edited May 6, 2012 1:47 PM

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texasrockgarden
Canyon Lake, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 6, 2012
12:49 PM

Post #9112794

Rambling Red Stripe

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1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 6, 2012
2:51 PM

Post #9112907

Mary, How are your Black Krims doing?
MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

May 6, 2012
2:58 PM

Post #9112918

tex, everything looks great! Abundant harvests soon come.

Lisa, I only had one and it's pretty much a goner. That's the one that began its end with the curling leaves, seemed to recover from that but never really did. There are two or three green fruit on it but the plant is slowly dying. One branch at a time.

Black Sea Man slightly better since I moved one out of the sun as noted above, the 2nd one, in the sun, is not happy about it.
1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 8, 2012
8:37 AM

Post #9115584

Mary, Ive read that Black Sea Man should be set out early for best results. I did plant it first but I dont think that is what they meant. LOL It still wasnt exactly "early". Sorry about your BK, thats one of my favorites.
MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

May 8, 2012
8:44 AM

Post #9115599

I still have plenty of BK seeds so I'll try again. When are you planning to begin germinating for the fall crop?

kevcarr59

kevcarr59
BUda, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 8, 2012
4:19 PM

Post #9116207

Some more pics of the Sun Sugars which may have been fertilizer burned. Still looks to be in the same shape, but with the rain we've had i'm hoping the fertilizer will flush out.

The 2 new black Krim's bought & potted yesterday. Kept them under the porch last night, didn't want them drowned. Got a nice rain-water soaking today on the patio. Using the newly purchased moisture meter doesn't really tell me anything... Instructions have "Wilt Point" and that's it. Do other meters give better information?

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MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

May 8, 2012
4:53 PM

Post #9116266

Never used a digital meter. Mine has a needle that points to dry or wet, and all points inbetween. brb, see if I can find a picture of one...here's one like mine except mine has the probe attached to the plastic top, not separate like this one.

This message was edited May 8, 2012 4:54 PM

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ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

May 8, 2012
8:25 PM

Post #9116610

On the Moisture meters, i recommend you look for one that has a long brass probe and nothing but a simple meter that reads from 1 to 10, and the after ten, it has the word "wet" after the needle goes off the scale.

I used one like this with maybe a 24 inch probe on the tree farm for years. No battery required and strong enough to stick in hard ground.

The one i have now is about the same but has between a 12 and 18" probe. Costs about 30 dollars but will last a lifetime. If you cannot find it on Google under Moisture Meters, i will look it up for you.
MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

May 8, 2012
8:28 PM

Post #9116615

The probe on mine is fairly short but you are right, it's stout. I abuse it in the dirt we have here. Mine was no where near $30, got it at Home Depot, under $10 I'm sure.
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

May 8, 2012
9:01 PM

Post #9116645

Mary,

I was wrong about the price, but in the other direction. I am not sure who i bought it from, but it must have been on sale, as i paid between 30 and 40 dollars for it. It is made by REOTEMP, and the one i had similar on the farm was made by Lincoln or Leonard. But the price has gone up, and both Leonard and ReoTemp are charging nearly 100 dollars for them. The probes are close to 3/8", and will last a long time, but it is hard for most people to justify that high a price. I tried one from HD, but i have a hard crust on my soil and it was just wire that bent for me. Sorry for the mistake in the price, but at the price i paid they are a real bargain.

Ernie
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 9, 2012
6:24 AM

Post #9116940

I like the Multi Meters. Moisture, pH, and Light. I don't need the light meter but I sure love the pH meter. Sometimes Home Depot has the multi meters.
1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 9, 2012
7:40 AM

Post #9117053

Mary-I dont do I "fall" crop.

Im still planting the stragglers for this season. LOL

I usually just keep my plants going over the summer. The production slows down but never stops (except last year). If one dies I may replace it. However, during the summer, I direct seed a few here and there. I have had good luck with this as the temps are high enough for good germination and they never have to be hardened off only protected from pillbugs. This year, for the first time in 20 yrs, there are slugs and snails EVERYWHERE, but no Fire Ants.
MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

May 9, 2012
7:43 AM

Post #9117058

That's interesting, about the slugs, snails and sans ants. I'll start germinating around mid-July I think. Mostly for sales to the community garden people and a few friends.
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

May 9, 2012
7:45 AM

Post #9117060

Cricket,
I think i have one of those, also, but have not used it since bending the probes. It would be good on contaier plants and planting mixes like you use.

For checking the moisture around my trees, which i am very fond of, i need to go about one foot deep, as that is where most of the feeder roots are. So i need the longer probe.

I have so many different soils here, i have not even tried to establish the pH of my soils, and try to watch the plants for problems there. So far i have not found any apparent problems.

How accurate do you find the pH tester to be compared to Lab tests?

1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 9, 2012
7:46 AM

Post #9117064

The snail thing is really weird. Everywhere I walk they are crunching. I noticed a few last year but this is crazy. LOL
I havent noticed any pill bugs this year, now that I think about it.
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 9, 2012
8:32 PM

Post #9117976

I have compared the meter pH analyzer and the home soil pH test kit. They were slightly--barely different. But I don't know which was was more accurate but I would say the home soil test would be and thats guessing. I did like the soil test kit better and I like them when I know the pH is close to good and I just need a simple test to amend a little. And I don't always test the soil either. I do plan on having one lab test done this fall to get a big picture of what I am workin with on a new garden plot.

I will compare lab test to home soil test this fall. The home soil test usually has 4 testing elements.
Of course lab test gives other nutrient details.


This message was edited May 9, 2012 9:34 PM
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 9, 2012
8:51 PM

Post #9117984

Most of the tomato plants that are in the ground, including the greenhouse beds have Verticillium Wilt, Early Blight, and Powdery Mildew. It all showed up earlier than normal and I normally get a larger crop before it all hits but since warm weather showed up early, mixed with some dry spells,,,and then a few cold wet spells...up and down yoyo...I have a combo of problems goin on around here.

The four beautiful tomato plants in the raised beds in the back yard have been hit with rain for a solid week now and Verticillium Wilt and Early blight has taken over the plant and uncontrollable at this point. I could not spray fungicide cause the rain would just wash it off. I wanted to yank them out of the ground today...5 and 6 feet tall. Some big beautiful tomatoes on the plants. Im undecided on what to do. Very disappointing.
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 9, 2012
8:53 PM

Post #9117985

How to grow the perfect long season tomato plant in Alabama... take a picture = it will last longer.
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 9, 2012
9:03 PM

Post #9117990

yep, I am frustrated...just when I tell myself to shut up...my brain rebels.

Ok. I have to start tomato seeds for the fall around the first of June. The only tomato plants that do not have foilage issues are the ones in the greenhouse growing in 4 gallon Pots. Well drained seems to help and they get more air circulation cause they are not overly crowded with vines and leaves. I hate pinching all those suckers. ... what to do , what to do. But...I like growing the pots on soil beds too cause tap roots find the soil below and this means less watering. ..., curse curse...i have a head ache.
MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

May 10, 2012
5:31 AM

Post #9118210

Jeez, what a bummer. I hate it when I lose one plant so I surely feel your pain cricket. It's a whole new day, hopefully things looks brighter.

dreaves

dreaves
Hutto, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 10, 2012
5:36 AM

Post #9118215

Cricket,

Sorry that you are having such problems! I don't know what to say, but we all feel the disappointment with you.

David
OutsidePlaying
Laceys Spring, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 10, 2012
6:12 AM

Post #9118272

Cricket, I hate that. We've had such crazy weather here this year, I guess we shouldn't be surprised.
Know what you mean about spraying for fungicide. I just sprayed Tuesday night, and of course it rained Wednesday morning unexpectedly. Drat and curses!! Doing it again this weekend I guess.

BTW, do you know what those little small ant-like black and red-bodied bugs are? The closest thing I can identify is a leaf-footed bug, but I'm wondering if it is some sort of nymph of something else. My SIL in Montgomery had them on her tomatoes last weekend.
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 10, 2012
11:35 AM

Post #9118656

This??

Soapberry bugs

Thumbnail by CricketsGarden
Click the image for an enlarged view.

CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 10, 2012
11:36 AM

Post #9118660

http://www.google.com/search?q=soapberry bugs&hl=en&client=firefox-a&hs=M3t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&prmd=imvns&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=jwqsT-qdMImi8ATkyowa&ved=0CF8QsAQ&biw=1280&bih=724
hornstrider
Hutto, TX

May 10, 2012
12:41 PM

Post #9118739

Below is a picture of my moisture meter. It took me a few years to learn to use it. But it works, and does not need batteries. I have with me at all times.

Thumbnail by hornstrider
Click the image for an enlarged view.

kevcarr59

kevcarr59
BUda, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 10, 2012
12:50 PM

Post #9118754

Horn,

I guess that's the "Original DIGITAL Moisture Meter"!!!!!!LOL...
OutsidePlaying
Laceys Spring, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 10, 2012
1:40 PM

Post #9118813

Cricket, I'm not sure that's the bug. The back end was more red, not the front end. That's close though. Are there several varieties of this soapberry bug? I've never heard of it.
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

May 10, 2012
5:58 PM

Post #9119146

Horn, that moisture meter does look very handy, but I am pretty sure the first joint or two would be broken off if it was shoved down through the crust on my ground. Maybe if you let your fingernail grow out you could whittle a sharp point on it, too.

Ernie

hornstrider
Hutto, TX

May 10, 2012
6:23 PM

Post #9119176

Ernie...you notice I did not picture my dirty fingernail...I did not want to show the working end of my digital moisture meter...btw buda..that was very clever...it cracked me up..
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 10, 2012
8:04 PM

Post #9119304

That is so funny Horn.

Outsideplaying...there are many bugs that resemble the squash bug. I remember the soapberry bug cause it is red and black and it was called a berry of all things. I can't think of another bug with your description that is red and black.

I sprayed everything down with Daconil. I don't think it will do much good. Tomorrow I have to start pruning off all the yellowing leaves. It will take me two whole days to prune and clean. Two plants are complete gonners and they are located in the back yard. They have spots all the way up to the top of the plant and they are 5 feet tall.
All the tomato plants in the garden look wonderful. All the Better Bush in the raised beds look wonderful. Time for them all to get a dose of fertilizer. Even the tomato plant in the 50 gallon barrel has a few spotted leaves. All is not completely lost yet. I will just have to work a little extra to keep the fungus issues under control for as long as I possibly can.
My camera has dead batteries... will post pics soon.

TX_gardener
Brady, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 11, 2012
6:06 AM

Post #9119536

Box elder bug? http://www.google.com/search?q=box elder bugs&hl=en&client=firefox-a&hs=thq&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&prmd=imvns&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=oA6tT6KvPMqCgwel-NnVDA&ved=0CIABELAE&biw=953&bih=467

strange looking link; hope it's ok...
texasrockgarden
Canyon Lake, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 11, 2012
6:25 AM

Post #9119563

Maybe the bugs are stink bug nymphs. Usually when I see stink bugs around I find their nymphs about on squash and they are redish orange and black.

This message was edited May 11, 2012 7:28 AM
OutsidePlaying
Laceys Spring, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 11, 2012
6:30 AM

Post #9119571

I don't think it's the box elder bug either. I think it looks more like the 2nd one in the photo in this link: http://insects.tamu.edu/fieldguide/aimg65.html
Kicking myself for not trying to get a photo but didn't think it would be so hard to find online.

Cricket, sorry you have so much work ahead!

Horn and Ernie - you guys are too funny!

OutsidePlaying
Laceys Spring, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 11, 2012
6:32 AM

Post #9119574

Texas - that was exactly one of my first thoughts but I couldn't find a photo.
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 11, 2012
7:56 AM

Post #9119694

bad mater plant
fair mater plants
good mater plant


Thumbnail by CricketsGarden   Thumbnail by CricketsGarden   Thumbnail by CricketsGarden
Click an image for an enlarged view.

CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 11, 2012
8:02 AM

Post #9119707

The better bush in the block raised bed have fallen to the side. That is kinda good cause they needed some air circulation between them and the 3ft eggplants behind them.

Thumbnail by CricketsGarden
Click the image for an enlarged view.

dreaves

dreaves
Hutto, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 11, 2012
9:39 AM

Post #9119835

Dodged a serious bullet last night. We had a pretty decent storm push through, with lots of wind and over two inches of rain. Every one of my regular tomato cages was blown over and most of the cherry cages, too. Luckily, the plants were soft (well hydrated) since we had a rain the day before. I don't think any of them were broken, though a few green tomatoes were knocked off. I usually secure the cages with an overhead wire, stretched tightly between the ends of the rows. Didn't do that this year, and I may pay for it if we keep having wind storms.

I also picked the very first ripe tomato. A lone Sun Sugar had somehow managed to make it to ripeness. I also picked an Indian Stripe (bruised from falling) and a Big Beef that were both showing a lot of color. Several tomatoes are starting to show a little color. No time for photos, though. I have to catch a plane to get to my daughter's college graduation tomorrow. Maybe more ripe tomatoes when I'm home on Sunday!

David
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 11, 2012
10:20 AM

Post #9119867

Glad you dodged a bullet David. Congrats to your daughter for her great achievements. Hooray for your ripe maters..

I ate a Sun Sugar yesterday. I think it was over ripe. Too mushy. Sweet.
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

May 11, 2012
12:53 PM

Post #9120015

Question?? Is it true that it is the White Butterfly that is the mother of the tomato Horn Worm? I heard that recently and saw a white butterfly heading for the tomato plants.


Lisa, I agree with you about cold ground slows growth and warm ground speeds it up. I had to replace a few tomato plants for septoria, and the replacements were 1/3 or less the size of the older ones, but now the replacements are nearly as large as the originals.

Ernie
OutsidePlaying
Laceys Spring, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 11, 2012
12:55 PM

Post #9120017

I echo what Cricket said, David. Congratulations to your daughter on her graduation and enjoy your weekend! Hope your maters didn't sustain damage, but that's a lesson for me to get some of my regular cages ready for the storms that eventually will come! Mine are beginning to set fruit!!

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

May 12, 2012
6:42 AM

Post #9120802

Ernie: - The tomato hornworm's mother is a moth.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manduca_sexta

The white butterfly you saw was probably looking for something in the cabbage family.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pieris_brassicae
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

May 12, 2012
7:24 AM

Post #9120848

Honeybee, Thanks, Mark told me it was a Hawk Moth, and it does not come to this area until late June or July, so i will not worry about the butterflies.

1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 12, 2012
2:53 PM

Post #9121215

I have been seeing tons of those white butterflies too they are everywhere. Not just in the garden. I dont ever remember seeing this many.
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

May 12, 2012
3:07 PM

Post #9121223

Typical Texas. I had only one white butterfly and you have a hundred of them. LOL.

Ernie

kevcarr59

kevcarr59
BUda, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 12, 2012
9:41 PM

Post #9121663

Ernie,

Haven't you heard, EVERYTHING'S bigger here in TEXAS!!!!LOL...
1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 12, 2012
11:03 PM

Post #9121694

I have seen more butterflies this year then ever before. But, like my boyz said, their babies are eating mom's plants. Lol

Alaska has many more Mosquitos then Texas and they are the size of Lear Jets. It's truly amazing, and gross.
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

May 13, 2012
7:13 AM

Post #9121936

Kev, Yes, I have heard that, and after driving across it a few times, i think everything is farther apart, too. LOL.

Lisa, Wyoming has a lot of big mosquitoes, too. I was fishing with my brother one time and there were so many mosquitos on his head i thought he was growing hair again.

Ernie
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 15, 2012
8:06 AM

Post #9124659

Well. ... It seems I have two soil borne diseases in the tomato greenhouse. Fusarium Wilt and Verticillium Wilt. Which means I can't grow tomatoes in that soil for 5 to 7 years. Deep disappointment. I could try raising the pH and solarizing the beds but chances are it will still be there. So...I will have to grow in containers and the containers will have to sit on plastic so the roots do not enter the soil...for at least 5 years. Seems like forever and such a wasted grow bed space. I can't grow eggplants, no peppers, no potatoes, no tomatoes and no beans. GEEEE
What is left???????????????
Okra?
Corn?
greens- turnips, lettuce, ???
Would Squash be ok? or Pumpkin patch--haha
I am just strucken with disappointment.

I have another greenhouse frame that I can put up somewhere for container tomatoes...gosh that really sucks!!!

HoneybeeNC

HoneybeeNC
Charlotte, NC
(Zone 7b)

May 15, 2012
8:13 AM

Post #9124675

Cricket - I am so sorry for the problems you are having with your tomatoes. The only thing I can think of is for you to move the greenhouse - but I assume that is not feasible.
OutsidePlaying
Laceys Spring, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 15, 2012
8:18 AM

Post #9124684

Oh, Cricket, that really stinks!! So sorry!!
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 15, 2012
8:21 AM

Post #9124691

greenhouse is wooden framed and concreted. 24x 75.

http://www.planetnatural.com/site/xdpy/kb/fusarium-wilt.html

http://www.planetnatural.com/site/mycostop-fungicide.html
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 15, 2012
8:24 AM

Post #9124694

I can try solarizing for 8 weeks this summer. Some claim that it works wonders.
Meanwhile...the house is loaded with plants. Don't know if I have the heart to pull them up just yet. Maybe 1st of July.

Gymgirl

Gymgirl
SE Houston (Hobby), TX
(Zone 9a)

May 15, 2012
8:33 AM

Post #9124703

If I lived close by, I'd come right over and just hold your hand...and then I'd help you start on phase 2 of your growing operation.

So, so, sorry, my friend!

Thumbnail by Gymgirl
Click the image for an enlarged view.

MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

May 15, 2012
9:12 AM

Post #9124752

cricket - that just stinks! What a shame and waste of your time and energy. I too am so sorry for your troubles.
1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 15, 2012
9:29 AM

Post #9124772

That stinks! I wonder how they got there?
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 15, 2012
12:03 PM

Post #9124935

How it happened:::: Growing during cool season with no heat and no air circulation and wet soil with poor drainage.

JoParrott
Richland, WA
(Zone 7b)

May 15, 2012
12:24 PM

Post #9124959

Cricket, are you sure about the diagnosis? Not to question your wisdom, but from what I have read there are many ailments that can resemble each other's symptoms- maybe what you have is not that serious? (just hopeful thinking for you) Since you are a commercial grower I'm sure you know worlds more that I do, but just in case ?
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 15, 2012
2:54 PM

Post #9125121

I am 99 percent sure, but I am human so there is room for error.

I just used some BioGrow Endo in some soil for 9 potted tomato plants. These plants go in the ground somewhere but I haven't decided where yet. The holes that I dig will also be treated with the same stuff. Just experimenting with these plants.

http://www.hollandsgiants.com/mycorrhizae.html
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

May 15, 2012
4:41 PM

Post #9125225

Cricket,
You may not be in the mood for an old man's advice, but in my 86 years i have had my share of ups and downs, and nearly everytime disaster has struck, it has opened up a new door, or path, to an even better situation. So, while i do know how sick this makes you feel now, there well may be some real, but yet unseen, benefits from this in the future. I have enjoyed very much reading and learning about your accomplishments, and am sure you will fully recover from this.

Ernie
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 15, 2012
7:14 PM

Post #9125373

thanks everybody...and thanks Ernie..






CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 20, 2012
5:42 AM

Post #9130299

To make a long story short

Mycorrhizae fungi enhances the health of plants by colonizing the plant roots with sticky hyphae making it difficult for disease to get into the plant roots. It is a good fungi that blocks the bad fungi such as Fursarium, Rhizactonia, Pythium, and Tricoderma. Mycorrhizae and other good fungi are destroyed when heavy chemical fertilizers and fungicides are used in the garden. Mycorrhizae fungi thrives in organic rich soils but deteriorate when the soils are tilled. It is important to add this fungi back into the soil at the root zone when transplanting into the garden or when you sow seeds.

This information and a lot more is in the book Giant Tomatoes by Marvin H. Meisner, M.D.

My plan is to solarize the beds for 4 weeks instead of 8. It only takes 4 to 6 weeks.
Then I will amend the soil and add fresh organic matter along with mycorrhizae fungi and other good fungi.
I want to add worm castings to the beds cause they are loaded with natural micro nutrients but I don't know how much to add. They say you can never add too much but they never say how much is needed to begin with.
I have my chickens and my rabbits for compost. Now I need a worm farm. I think I read that it takes 2000 worms to produce 7 lbs of casting per month but I have no idea how much that is by cup measurements. I know it doesn't take as much micro nutrients as it does regular NPK. And you only have to spread the worm casting every 3 months or so. But how much?

The other great thing about all this is...they say one plant will produce more tomatoes than you can imagine which cuts down on how many plants you grow... 10 to 1. If you grow 10 plants using heavy fertilizers and end up with disease and fungus then your production is low...of course. But if you grew just one plant using balanced organic amendments and fertilizers such as kelp and fish emulsion, then your production will be more and last longer than those 10 chemical plants. Most people grow many many tomato plants just so they can get enough fruit before disease takes over. (like me)

I am loading the compost tumbler today. It is barn litter full of hay and chicken manure. It should be ready to use by the time the beds have been solarized.
I have a lot to do and will plant in the beds in about 8 weeks and see what happens.
I won't be growing the single vine plants. I will be growing whole plants with some pinching and pruning. I don't want to waste all my time tieing up single vines only to end up with a disease a few weeks later. Using reinforcement wire cages that will be torched to burn any disease that may be on the cages. I am only growing 24 plants.


JoParrott
Richland, WA
(Zone 7b)

May 20, 2012
7:23 AM

Post #9130446

That sounds like a workable plan- good luck. It is so sad that you had all the problems this year after your hard work. I think the challenge of gardening is what makes us keep going when we have setbacks. I'll be looking for your progress reports.
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 20, 2012
8:38 AM

Post #9130511

I always knew that organic gardening was better for the plants and the earth but I never had a resource for organic but I have been working on that for a couple of years. I started out with cow and switched to goats and chickens but gathering goat manure was difficult cause they walk all over the place so I sold the goats and bought rabbits cause their poo is right there and easy to gather. Chicken litter is easy to gather too and I have a years worth to compost. On the normal average, if a chicken or rabbit eats 1/2 cup of feed per day then that is "about" how much poo you get in return or just a tad less.
1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 20, 2012
2:26 PM

Post #9130853

Cricket-adding Organic Material to the soil improves the health of the soil but you can still use man made fertilizers, as the plant can not tell the difference between synthetic or natural N,P, or K. There was a thread on this topic on the Soil and Compost forum. When you use synthetic fertilizer you have a lot better idea of exactly how much of these major amendments you are giving your plants.

That being said I do lasagna gardening meaning that I add OM to my garden year round and hardly ever till. I can tell the soil is healthy because there are a ton of earthworms. The soil around here is terrible but after many years of adding OM I can now dig with a hand shovel. And the micronutrients are very important too, its not an either or, its a balance.

Thank you for pointing out that solarization is great but it does kill the good as well as the bad (like antibiotics). So the good needs to be replaced for optimal results.
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 20, 2012
4:38 PM

Post #9130970

YOu dont think I should solarize?

I knew i could use some syntheic fertilizers but heavily and I have to wait 2 weeks after adding mycorrhizae fungi to give it a chance to take action which has antibiotics.
1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 20, 2012
4:51 PM

Post #9130991

Thats not what I meant. Youve done a lot more research and have a lot more experience then I do. All I meant was that solarization kills the good and the bad but it sounds like your going to add the good back in. I think you need to do whatever works and it sounds to me like you have a good plan. : ) By adding the Organic Material you will improve the overall health of your soil, but that doesnt mean you cant use other fertilizers as needed.

I think you should do whatever you were going to do, I apologize if I implied other wise. Good Luck!
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 20, 2012
6:07 PM

Post #9131084

I feel like somebody cursed me...you know...a hex.
I saw that there was a few fungal problems still showing up here and there so I pulled out the hose and the hose end sprayer and I sprayed everything with with Daconil...from top to bottom and side ways. Three days later Everything had powdery mildew from top to bottom.
It was like the fungicide drench gave them a fungus... A few days later...today...they look like they have yellow chicken pox.
This has been by far the worse year for me.

Thumbnail by CricketsGarden   Thumbnail by CricketsGarden   Thumbnail by CricketsGarden
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CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 20, 2012
6:17 PM

Post #9131095

All the tomato plants in the greenhouse, in the grow beds in the back yard , in the table top gardens , the squash in the backyard , all have powdery mildew. Even the better bush in the garden had powdery mildew. (i got mad and ripped those out of the ground) On the other end of the garden, There is 6 Celebrity tomato plants, One sunsugar, and one sweet million cherry and non of those have any issues at all. Somebody knock on wood.

I need to know something.
If a tomato plant starts having a few fungal problems rather it be mildew or whatever, will it always have that problem? Is it running through its veins? so that even fungicide will not stop it? I have never seen so much fungus in my life and spraying them with fungicide didnt help.
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 20, 2012
6:21 PM

Post #9131102

http://powderymildewremover.com/

hmmmm

juhur7

juhur7
Anderson, IN
(Zone 6b)

May 20, 2012
6:24 PM

Post #9131107

I've never had that happen, looks really bad, sometimes the fungus gives up after a few ph changes or as it goes through the life cycle.
That sure doesn't help trying to combat it though.
1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 20, 2012
7:04 PM

Post #9131175

Daconil doesnt kill the fungus. As I understand it, it blocks the receptors on the plants so that the fungus cant get in/on the plant. Ive also heard you should rotate products so the fungus doesnt build up a resistance. BUT you seem to have had so many different kinds. I dont know what to say. I feel bad.

Gymgirl

Gymgirl
SE Houston (Hobby), TX
(Zone 9a)

May 20, 2012
9:12 PM

Post #9131323

Cricket,
Swing this by Carolyn Male, if you haven't already. She's probably seen this before.
ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

May 20, 2012
9:18 PM

Post #9131333

I have a lot of birds around here so do not have bug problem, prior to starting a garden last year, my soil has not been tilled for 20 years, so i do not have any soil diseases, but i am surrounded by fungus factories that look like big trees and thick underbrush, so i am constantly fighting fungus.

I have Coryneum blight, {Shothole} on my Peach tree, Black Spot on my Persimmon trees, and Cercosporum [sp?] [Red Spot] on my Statice Flowers. Each requires a different fungicide, so i mixed up an 8 gallon batch using all three the other day, and gave everything a triple dose. One of the persimmon trees looked a little dazed for a day or two, but everything else looked much better, with no black spot showing today, and less Coryneum, so if this does not help, there is a fourth Chemical, used in Daconil, that i am going to add to the Cocktail, and see if i can stop it that way.

I have only had a little bit of Mildew on some squash plants a while back, and one shot of Kocide stopped that.

Ernie
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 21, 2012
5:42 AM

Post #9131559

I can't get Kocide locally. I use the Southern Ag Copper and the last time I used that was 4 weeks ago. Then I used up the last of my Fung-O-Nil, then I used the Daconil. I am out of copper and need to get some. It works better than anything else does. The powdery mildew spores are too wide spread to stop it now. I couldnt spray anything outside while it was raining and it rained a lot for about 10 days.
I am pulling the plants in the greenhouse anyway cause one grow bed has Verticulium or Fursarium .. Either or is just as bad as the other and now with everything covered with mildew...i just want to pull it all and start over. Its not too late to start over.


ERNIECOPP
Vista, CA

May 21, 2012
7:48 AM

Post #9131749

Cricket, It is a neverending battle, for sure.

CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 21, 2012
9:33 AM

Post #9131944

Hubby bought some copper for me this morning while he was picking up feed for animals but I cant spray til late this evening to be on the safe side. . It is suppose to rain today but it keeps missing us and going around us. Cloudy then sunny then cloudy

someone mentioned the Natural Guard Copper Soap. I have seen this at the co-op.
What does anyone know about that stuff?

kevcarr59

kevcarr59
BUda, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 22, 2012
8:28 PM

Post #9134500

Cricket, I am sorry to hear what's happened to your GH and I'm wishing you the best of luck in the fight. And I do thank you for all the help you've given me, without it, I doubt I would have been as successful with my tomatoes so far. Looking at the last photo you posted, I just found the same thing on one of my Parks Whoppers plants. It was a bit too late this evening to get out there and prune and spray, but that's the first thing on the agenda in the morning. I didn't even notice it when I was out there taking the following pictures, but when I was downloading them off the camera I saw it.

I know you said you used the Daconil, and was also going to use the copper. What does the copper do? How close together can you apply those 2 different products?

#1-- First red Big Beef of the season, wasn't the first fruit but I guess it decided to catch up...

#2-- In the background you can see the affected leaf and will get that gone in the morning and the plants around it sprayed with the Daconil... Okay, it's in the foreground, I was more interested in the tomato cluster and never saw the leaf...



Good luck,

Kevin

Thumbnail by kevcarr59   Thumbnail by kevcarr59
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1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 22, 2012
9:55 PM

Post #9134578

Kev-is that the only leaf you see an issue with? I see that from time to time but don't think much of it unless it is widespread. Now I panic if I see1 black/brown spot. Lol

kevcarr59

kevcarr59
BUda, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 23, 2012
1:14 AM

Post #9134627

Just saw that one right in the front and did notice another leaf or two. I thought I'd prune the bad leaves off and spray with some Daconil. Cricket talked about her dilemma and it might have me running a little scared. Don't want to lose the few plants that I have.

Please, any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 23, 2012
5:11 PM

Post #9135740

No suggestions. Spraying Daconil can't hurt. I really doubt if you have a serious problem but better safe then sorry. The wind is doing a number on mine, yours too I'm sure.

juhur7

juhur7
Anderson, IN
(Zone 6b)

May 23, 2012
7:54 PM

Post #9135990

Well I'm nowhere near ya, and my plants are heat frustrating some. Still a couple of weeks before I see my first tomatoes of this season.
I've seen some slight signs of fungus already myself , that does not bode well for many.I keep going around the edges of everything with some sulpher of different concentrations,I'm hoping that keeps everything under control.

kevcarr59

kevcarr59
BUda, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 23, 2012
8:15 PM

Post #9136014

Did some pruning and found several more leaves, looks like only 2 or 3 plants, but sprayed all the tomatoes...We've got several that are starting to pink up and they have some decent size to them. The Parks Whoppers are starting to set a good amount of fruit and they're getting some size to them. We actually got to pick the first Big Beef tonight and got some other goodies...

The red tomato in the pic a couple of posts above is still on the vine, this is another we found from the other side... Grand daughter Lorelai hamming it up...

Thumbnail by kevcarr59   Thumbnail by kevcarr59   Thumbnail by kevcarr59
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MaryMcP
Phoenix, AZ
(Zone 9b)

May 23, 2012
8:25 PM

Post #9136030

Lorelai looks sweet, nice picture.
OutsidePlaying
Laceys Spring, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 24, 2012
6:09 AM

Post #9136323

I sprayed mine last night too. Saw a couple of leaves on an heirloom yellow with something that might be fungus on 2 huge lower leaves so 'off with their heads' just in case. But my tomatoes are still green and small which is normal for this time of year for our zone.

Gymgirl

Gymgirl
SE Houston (Hobby), TX
(Zone 9a)

May 24, 2012
7:02 AM

Post #9136380

Phenomenal!
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 24, 2012
8:33 AM

Post #9136506

The best policy is prevention. Once fungus hits it is an ongoing battle. Sadly i did not prevent well enough. You can alternate different fungus treatments every 7 days. My mistake was waiting too long between treatments.
I am waiting to pull the plants cause I have Cherokee purples trying to ripen!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! dang it. I can slow down the fungus but I can't get rid of it at this stage. Might as well enjoy some maters as long as I can before I yank them out. I am not in a hurry. I am going to grow my fall toms in 25 gallon pots while I nurture the soil in the greenhouse beds for spring next year.

OutsidePlaying
Laceys Spring, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 24, 2012
9:06 AM

Post #9136556

Cricket, I agree, and I have been on a spraying program ever since I put mine in the ground. It definitely helps, but with the rain and watering (even from soaker hoses), it always seems mine are bound to get some sort of fungus eventually.
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 24, 2012
9:26 AM

Post #9136589

Right...always no matter what we grow down here. That is why I like to grow a spring crop and a fall crop so I can get enough tomatoes.

#1 pic ..I picked the Large Red tomato before it was completely ripe.--it tasted pretty good but not much to the inside.
#2 the White Bianca- blah tasting
#3 the Cherokee Purple... it was ok...but I still like Brandywine a whole lot more.
#4 the Large Red sliced, White Bianca sliced.


Thumbnail by CricketsGarden   Thumbnail by CricketsGarden   Thumbnail by CricketsGarden   Thumbnail by CricketsGarden
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OutsidePlaying
Laceys Spring, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 24, 2012
11:24 AM

Post #9136715

Have you ever tried Lillian's Yellow? I grew some really good ones a few years back but haven't had any luck with them since the drought of a few years ago (deer got them last year). They are sweeter so if you like a lot of acid you might not like them, but they are really pretty and look good on a plate with the reds. So far I have some babies on my one large plant and another small plant growing this year. It's the one with a couple of fungus on the leaves I picked off. I do love Cherokee Purples! Brandywine didn't do much for me a few years ago...too much plant and not enough fruit to suit me.
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 24, 2012
4:34 PM

Post #9137138

I can make the brandywines produce abundantly.

Last years Brandywine...pruned to single vines...lots of maters on that one vine. Grew them in 4 gallon pots on the grow beds. That method seems to work the best for me.


Thumbnail by CricketsGarden
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1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 24, 2012
7:53 PM

Post #9137417

Cricket I may try your method as I didn't have good luck with BW either. I grew Cowlick's Brandywine last year for the first time, it's supposed to do better in the heat, but it got so hot nothing did well, I'm growing it again this year, hoping for better results. Also, where did you get the seeds for the Large Red tomato? It looks like a stuffing tomato but the one I'm thinking of has another name.
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 25, 2012
6:01 AM

Post #9137779

tomatofest.com
OutsidePlaying
Laceys Spring, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 25, 2012
6:25 AM

Post #9137807

I'm always game for trying something new or different. Will put them on my list for next year and try your method. We'll stay in touch on this forum I'm sure!
CricketsGarden
Nauvoo, AL
(Zone 7a)

May 25, 2012
7:10 AM

Post #9137864

here is an article-info about Kelp. (not about hydropoinics but at a hydro site)
http://www.simplyhydro.com/benefits_of_kelp.htm
koshki
Grosse Pointe Shores, MI
(Zone 6a)

May 25, 2012
8:11 AM

Post #9137955

Hi all,
Been lurking on this thread for a while, learning a lot.

About the powdery mildew issue...has anyone used either Actinovate or Serenade on their plants? I tried both after the fact (PM) last year, but this year I'm using them both ahead of time.

I have already given my six humble tomato plants a drench of the Actinovate. They just went into their containers about 2 weeks ago. In another week or two, I plan on starting foliar spraying. I also innoculated them with michhorizae (sp?...brand name Plant Success) when I started the seeds and again when I planted them. A guy at the hydroponics store I visited recently told me the PS also has a bacteria that is supposed to help prevent PM. B. subtilis, I think.

I used the Serenade last summer on a plant that got PM bad...it seemed to almost "melt" the PM. Would have to say that it kept them PM at bay, rather than cure it, so I'm hoping using it before I need it will help prevent needing it. (Did that make any sense, lol? ) I also sprayed it on some beebalm that got it, and again, seemed to keep PM at bay.

BTW, that Serenade is some stinky stuff. Think sceptic field.

Katherine

Gymgirl

Gymgirl
SE Houston (Hobby), TX
(Zone 9a)

May 25, 2012
9:10 AM

Post #9138049

Could this Serenade be used on Ky Wonder Pole beans that seem to have something going on with the leaves?

Here's what they look like, and there's still a whole lot of heat left for our summer.

Thanks!

Linda

Thumbnail by Gymgirl   Thumbnail by Gymgirl   Thumbnail by Gymgirl   Thumbnail by Gymgirl
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koshki
Grosse Pointe Shores, MI
(Zone 6a)

May 25, 2012
9:40 AM

Post #9138078

Linda,

First, I've never grown beans, and I don't know what is ailing yours. However, the label on the bottle says it controls black spot, powdery mildew, rust, gray mold, leaf blight, and scab for use on roses, vegetables, fruits, flowering plants, trees and shrubs. The inside label lists a bunch of diseases controlled, including bean rust...do you think that could be your problem?

The active ingredient is "QST 713 strain of bacillus subtilis"...that keeps showing up everywhere!

The label also says it's most effective if started before symptoms appear. Hmm, says to store are room temperature. I might need a new bottle as this one was in the garage over the winter, and I'm sure it got to below freezing at least a couple times in there.

Katherine
1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 25, 2012
10:24 AM

Post #9138137

Linda-your beans kinda look like they mite have Spider Mites. Have you seen any webbing? It still could be mites but webbing is a dead give away.

Gymgirl

Gymgirl
SE Houston (Hobby), TX
(Zone 9a)

May 25, 2012
11:47 AM

Post #9138233

Thanks, koshki & Lisa!
I have spider mites on the lone gardenia sitting next to the beans, and, so far, no webbing on the beans. But, I'll move the standard immediately. I gave it a good blast water bath a couple days ago, and it's doing much better. Will be washing the top in a tub of soapy lemon Alax in a few.



1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 25, 2012
1:48 PM

Post #9138401

I suggest Neem oil it works great for mites. Once they get established they are really hard to get rid of. Water works too, as they like a dry dusty environment. Id be cautious about using Ajax especially if they are in a container. But thats just me, dont use the neem when its hot..you know the rest..

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