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Tomato Troubles

The Bottom Leaves On My Tomatoes Are Turning Brown.
What Is Wrong?

By Jay Mclaren

This is an annual problem and it shows up on tomatoes planted in the same garden year after year. This wilt disease is soil born and it doesn't go away. Therefore, the following steps are essential to stop the damage from this disease.

At this point, applying a fungicide will help retard the process of the disease. It will not make it go away. Use a Bordo dust or spray on all of the plant leaves, including the upper ones that do not show any signs of damage. Apply this product as a dust early in the morning while the dew is on or it may be mixed in water and sprayed on.

It is essential when watering not to splash water on the leaves and to avoid splashing the soil up onto the plant. A slow soaking of plants at the root will be necessary to prevent further spread of the disease.

For next year, plant the tomatoes in a totally different area of the garden. Spread a black plastic sheet such as a garbage bag held down at the edges and plant the tomato through a hole in the plastic. This will prevent the soil from being splashed up onto the leaves when watering.

Choose varieties that are clearly labeled as being wilt resistant. They are usually listed on the label as VFN lettering. These varieties are improved and resist this wilt disease.