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Question

gally13kms
Why are my tomato plants losing their blossoms?
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I have two heirloom tomato varieties growing in pots on my patio.  The plants themselves are doing great.  They are blossoming a lot, but then the blossoms dry out and fall off.  Is there anything I can do to keep my blossoms from falling off so I can actually get some tomatoes growing?  I don't know if it matters, but I am growing Pink Brandywine and Mr Stripey.

There are many different things that can cause blossom drop in tomatoes: -Temperature Too High or Too Low -Lack of Pollination -Nitrogen - Too Much or Too Little Humidity Too High or Low Humidity. -Lack of water -Stress from insect damage or disease -Too Heavy Fruit Set Have a look here to see what you can do about each of these causes: http://gardening.about.com/od/problemspest1/a/BlossomDrop.htm
Thank you for the link! I am going to check it out now and see what I can find! We have defiitely had high tempos and extremely low humidity here over the past couple of weeks. I had some tomato worms last week, but have not seen any new ones...so possibly they are just super stressed. I will check out the link and keep everyone posted! thanks for the quick reply!!
Could be ,they are over watered ,or they suffer from container syndrome: too dry followed by too wet upon watering. That's one problem I have with my container tomatoes. But then, my garden gets a measured 49^C / 120^F all morning before receiving shade at noon these days..... . Greetings ,antonis.
I have been watering a lot due to high temperatures here, but I have been trying to keep them consistent. I am pretty sure they were not drying out. I guess it is possible though, even though I tried to stay on top of it.
I think *container syndrome* is a good guess. Tomatoes develop best & taste best if they are not overwatered. Still, you have to support the foliage with enough hydration. Keeping the growing medium evenly moist is a challenge. Check your fertilizer methods to ensure that you are not giving the tomatoes too much nitrogen that encourages foliage at blossoming time.
I have not put any fertilizer on them yet. I have been watering frequently, but our temps the last two weeks have been over 100 degrees. The plants are not turning yellow, and they look healthy ad green. Its just the blossoms that dry out and fall off. Any good recommendations for what kind of fertilizer I should use? I used just a regular potting mix for them...probably a no-no, I am sure, but money is tight right now ad that is what I had.
I used to have a productive *tomato house* but haven't grown tomatoes for some time, so I looked around online to update. One good question is - how big is your tomato pot? If you have access to a good nursery, I think I would just buy some good compost & work a cup to a quart of it into the top inches of your pot. This will leach out nutrients as you water, without adding extra nitrogen. It may help with water-retention in your pot. If your pot is big enough, you might tuck in one or more basil plants or seeds as a companion plant support. There are small varieties. To the extent you can, I think I would really *baby* the watering method in such hot weather & add a little at a time for even moisture - to avoid *container syndrome.* :-) If you are watering with tap water, you might want to have a water source to let stand so the municiple chlorine can evaporate out before you give it to your tomato. We're having hot weather here too in the Rocky Mountain high desert. I cover my beautiful broccoli plants with black plastic milk crates during the baking hours of the day. So far so good ... :-)
... Adding compost for fertilizer would also add some microbial life to your tomato growing medium - which may have been sterile. This could help with bio-synergy. :-)
Something else I am doing to maintain even soil moisture in hot weather is mulching with a layer of dry, fluffy, organic grass clippings. The peas get about 4" & the soil is 30 degrees cooler than the air. The heat-lovers only a 1/2" *veil.* My heat-lover this year is Burgundy Okra. Anything ~organic, shredded & airy will do ...
We are on well water, so I shouldnt have the problem with chlorine. I will try planting some basin in there with them ad see if that helps/ Thanks!! And I do have plenty of old manure laying around...thanks for the advice!
Sounds good! You want to make sure your manure is old & self-composted or it may add nitrogen & salts. But *old* manure works - even better mixed with some old leaf duff [or mould] from under trees.
I found that I lost a lot of temperatures this year due to the heat and the fact that the pollinators weren't pollinating because of the high temps and low humidity.

 

 

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