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2017 tomatoes failed

Discussion in 'Farming and Gardening Forum' started by chuckwood, Nov 3, 2017.

  1. chuckwood

    chuckwood Addicted to ArboristSite

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    We had cool and rainy weather, which of course promoted fungal diseases. My plants produced very little before they turned brown and died. I suppose I could have sprayed them a lot with fungicides, but I had too many other tasks to do, and lacked enthusiasm for mixing sprays. Besides, in years past I've found that spraying doesn't accomplish too much anyway. I did prune them a lot, but that didn't help much either. I did learn something interesting. I planted some "volunteer" tomatoes that were growing wild in my tomato area from last year. These grew from seeds from hybrids and they had reverted back to whatever originals they were in making the hybrids. I did get small but tasty tomatoes from these "wild" plants. These "backwards" varieties turned out to be very resistant to disease, and they produced tomatoes all the way to the end of the season. So there *are* some tomatoes out there that will work in my garden. But it's going to be very difficult to find out what they were and probably impossible to purchase them.
     
  2. Conquistador3

    Conquistador3 Le Comte de Frou Frou

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    Try some varieties from Russia, Ukraine or Poland. They are the most resistant to fungal diseases and thrive even wth short, cool Summers. There are literally thousands of varieties to pick from so you can experiment and see what is better suited to your soil and micro-climate. If it's rotten as the one here, that's your best bet.
    I suggest you try Soldacki, Kosmonaut Volkov and Kakao for starters. Kakao was selected from the old Black Krim to solve some genetic instability issues it had. If you can get your hands on them, get some Sasha's Altai seeds. I thought it was all spin about this tomato until I got my hands on some seeds. The only problem this variety has is low productivity, for the rest believe the hype.

    One last thing. Fungus resistance or not, spray that tomatoes with a copper-based fungicide every two weeks. Unlless you have thousands of plants it doesn't take that much time and it's dirt cheap insurance.
     
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  3. chuckwood

    chuckwood Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Thanks, next year I'll be trying some of these varieties you mention. Low productivity is still better than no productivity. Possibly one of my issues is that I'm buying tomato plants from local stores instead of growing my own from seed. My garden area has been in use for over a century, and has probably through the years accumulated a great stock of tomato fungus in the soil.
     
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  4. Del_

    Del_ Get outside.

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    Look for varieties resistant and you are going to have to go hybrid.

    VNFT is what you want.
     
  5. chuckwood

    chuckwood Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I've tried fungus resistant hybrids and they didn't do much better than the heirlooms. I think my soil is infected pretty badly from many years of growing tomatoes in the same general area. I move them around from year to year, but it doesn't seem to do much good.
     
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  6. Del_

    Del_ Get outside.

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    Your tomato cages are infected, too. Plus your gardening habits may spread disease. TMV is spread by cigarette smokers with their hands.
     
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  7. Conquistador3

    Conquistador3 Le Comte de Frou Frou

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    For a few years around here we had serious problems with cucumber mosaic virus, so I obviously tried varieties marketed as "virus resistant", such as Aphrodite Summer squashes. A whole lot of good they did. That's how I learned not to trust what is written on the label, especially of F1 hybrids and seeds commonly sold in nurseries. The problem was solved through trial and error: I now grow a squash variety I got on trade from the Donbass which seems perfectly suited to local growing conditions.

    Anyway I think your first task is to correctly identify what caused your problems: it's useless to attempt tackling, say, Fusarium wilt if your problem is, say, Late blight.
     
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  8. farmer steve

    farmer steve outstanding in my field, 5150

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    here's one i have tried with some pretty good disease resistance. i just pulled this off the web so you may want to look for better prices. plowing you garden instead of tilling may help too. as mentioned earlier a regular copper spray will help. also chlorothalonil is a good protective fungicide. for tomatoes and other veggies. read the label!!! as Del said possibly your cages need disinfected. burn all your tomato plant refuse if you can. do not compost it!!!!!
     
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  9. Marine5068

    Marine5068 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I'd like to grow some tomatoes and a few other veggies to can for my small family.
    My father was an amazing gardener. He grew some pretty fantastic food that's for sure.
    He never composted but did use cow manure and made his own soil as well as working in the garden every day.
    I am just getting tired of supermarket produce that is costly, lacks flavor and is possibly not good for us in the long term because of pesticides, GMO and other factory farm issues.
    I am planning to start small and use raised beds and mix my own soil.
    Will start with tomatoes, bell peppers, and some kind of beans.
    Any info or input would be great. I have a good collection of sweet bell pepper seeds collected over the years.
     
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  10. Conquistador3

    Conquistador3 Le Comte de Frou Frou

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    Well, good for you!

    I don't know if they are still available, but I suggest you check one of John Seymour's books on vegetable gardening, for no other reason he's one of the few authors outside of France to have covered in-depth the method of soil preparation through "deep bedding" or, as it's called around here, "French bedding". It's the one best suited to small lots because it was originally developed for market gardens, hence the need for high productivity.

    If you are starting from scratch remember the first couple of years can be a bit disappointing, either because the soil is still not "broken in" or because you still have to find the most suitable cultivars to your growing conditions. Given your area I suggest you check into Russian/Ukrainian/Polish cultivars as they are the best suited for short, hot Summers and generally unfavorable growing conditions.
    If you plan to start plants from seeds, invest in one or more decent seedboxes and a grow light. I am presently waiting one of those new fancy "UFO" LED grow lights to try out on the seed boxes. Seed indoors at very least four weeks before transplanting outdoors: remember peppers vary wildly in germination time (for five days to over two weeks) and many of the seeds you have may not be viable anymore.

    One final thing: forget about all the things you've heard about "no pesticides". You will need them, otherwise you are just sweating a lot to feed a bunch of rather unpleasant bugs. What can you do is be smart when using them: for example you can replace formaldehyde-based slug poison with iron sulfite, which is very low toxicity (you'll get an upset stomach well before eating enough to hurt yourself) and breaks down well before reaching the water table.
    And while well composted manure is excellent to start the season, crops with high nutritive requirements, such as eggplants, will require additional applications of fertilizer during the season.
     
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  11. Marine5068

    Marine5068 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Thanks for some great tips and I will definitely read up more on gardening and growing from seed.
    I do have two large light tables for starting plants indoors.
    Should be interesting and I'm sure my vegetarian wife will love the home grown flavor.
     
  12. Conquistador3

    Conquistador3 Le Comte de Frou Frou

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    If you want to start some plants from seed you need to start well before planting times and to choose early cultivars.
    For example if you want eggplants, you need to plant them in the open when they are at least 4" tall and choose early cultivars such as Almaz or Clara, which will give you good yield during the first (and only) year of life and before the weather becomes too cold for them. Oh, and a little trick to increase the yield I learned from Pakistani immigrants: plant them in hole filled 50/50 with ordinary soil and dry manure. ;)
     
  13. StihlBadger

    StihlBadger ArboristSite Lurker

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    I have had good luck with Ichiban eggplants in my garden.I have some pepper plants and several unknown variety eggplants in a fig tree container that I have overwintered in my kitchen from Summer 2017. I hope to get an early start once the weather warms up.
     
  14. Mycrossover

    Mycrossover ArboristSite Member

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    Ichiban means #1 in Japanese and they sure are. The the skin is thin and they are so sweet.

    Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk
     
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  15. Trickyputt

    Trickyputt ArboristSite Lurker

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    I have an old plot in Alabama and I use this thyme oil product. I tilled it in heavy 4 times across winter before the spring planting. I also sprayed the product during the season, at least every 2-3 weeks. I had 32 tomato plants because usually the organic methods I try keep me behind the curve so more plants but reduced yield was my strategy. Well that turned out to be a problem this year. The wife was bitchin about all the work puttin up tomatoes. And everything else, cucumber, squash etc. It all jumped. It turns out, if you look into it, thyme oil is a nasty thing to do to any fungus. It might not kill every little thing, but it damn sure slows down the progressive death so the plant can get its fruits on.

    IMG_20180924_131224.jpg
     
  16. Little Al

    Little Al Addicted to ArboristSite

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    One last thing. Fungus resistance or not, spray that tomatoes with a copper-based fungicide every two weeks. Unlless you have thousands of plants it doesn't take that much time and it's dirt cheap insurance.[/QUOTE] & mixing Potassium potash with your watering water helps & the taste "muuuummm" google give you the lowdown
     
  17. muddstopper

    muddstopper Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Since gardening is going on now and its been a year since this thread has been active, I thought I would revive it to see how everybody is dealing with bugs and fungus and in my case drought.
    For fungus, I forgo the copper sulfate and usual fungicides. I like using Neem oil about once a week. I usually mix the neem with spinosad to get a pretty good control of just about everything in the garden. That includes most types of fungus. Both products are considered organic and can be used in a organic program. Neem doesnt hurt earthworms, but will kill bees so you have to pick a time to spray while bees are not active. So far this year, I have seen just one japanese beetle and I seem to have the potatoe bug under control. The potatoe bug hit with a vengeance almost overnite. One spraying two weeks ago almost eliminated them completely. Yesterday there where a few scattered thru the field and today I hit them with another round of neem and spinosad. That might be the last time this year I have to spray for the potatoe bug. Will have to wait and see if the japanese beetle decides to make a run at the veggies.

    For dealing with the drought, I bought a couple of 330gal totes. I already had a trashpump and a couple of impact sprinklers. I had to buy a few fittings to hook everything up. I loaded both totes on my 6x10 dump trailer and use the trash pump to fill the totes at the creek. I then hual the totes to the garden and use the trash pump to supply the water to the sprinklers. So far, I have pumped a little over 2000gal of water on my two plots. Supposed to rain tomorrow, we'll see. I took the opportunity today to till and weed the garden patch and spray the tater patch. If it rains, the water should soak into the soil. If it dont rain, I'll just fill up the totes and fire up the pump.
     
  18. chuckwood

    chuckwood Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I've never had much success with the various tomato fungicides, including the copper sprays. This year I'm trying a spray made with baking soda and oil. I like your setup for hauling water. I don't like it when I get my water bill and I'm being charged for sewage treatment when the water is going on my garden instead.
     
  19. muddstopper

    muddstopper Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I was suprised just how much water it actually takes to water a garden. I dumped 1000gal in this ditch row in my veggie garden. Resized_20190601_113158.jpeg
    I was trying flood irrigation. The water didnt even make it to the end of a 60ft row. There is another 330 gal in the rows to the right in the pic. I let the water run in faster and made it to the end of the row, but it wsnt enough to wet thru the row. I hooked up one sprinkler head at the ends of the row and pumped another 300gal thru the sprinkler and managed to wet the soil, but the water didnt go deep in the ground, mostly just wet the top. It dried out enough in two days that I could run a tiller thru it. I should of took a pic, the weeds are gone now. Supposed to rain the next three days, yeah!

    On another good note, I found some wild rasberries growing on the hill side. Picked enough for the wife to make a pint of jelly. Found some more today, will pick tomorrow if it aint raining. I havent seen any wild rasberries around here in years. I marked the canes and will try to propagate a few when I find out when the best time to try and do so.
     
  20. chuckwood

    chuckwood Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I've been watering this year, the hard way. I've got a few of those black soaker hoses that you run down the rows next to the plants, they are a hassle to set up and they run up the water bill, especially the old ones that blow out a big leak and then flood your garden on one spot. I've been filling 5 gallon plastic water jugs in my pond, put them in a trailer, and haul them up to my garden. Then I go down the rows, pouring water directly on the base of the plants as I'm walking along. This seems to help some during dry periods. Each year, the city leaf collection dept. has been taking dump truck load after load onto my place and they dump it out next to my garden free! They are happy to find a place to dump leaves that is very close to their operations center and I get vast amounts of free mulch. I let the leaves sit for a year and then load them onto a small trailer pulled by a garden tractor (I use a front end loader for that). Then when the plants are small, I go up and down the rows using a pitchfork and pack my entire garden plot with a layer of leaves up to a foot thick. The leaves hold the moisture in the ground eliminating the need to water. They also prevent weed growth. Basically, after I get the thick layer of leaves down, I was done with the garden chores until harvest. I didn't do that this year, couldn't schedule the time to do a lot of backbreaking pitchfork and shovel work. So this year I'm using the tillers instead on the weeds and I'm having to haul water and run tillers. When it gets really hot in summer, gardening really sucks.
     

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