early and late blight on tomatoes

Asked November 19, 2016, 9:44 PM EST

Every year my tomato crop get less I know is should rotate so next year I am ging to put down clear plastic and keep on most of the summer. I am hoping to kill off weed seed and soil diseases and plant tomatoes else where Do you have any advice in this matter? kent county mi

Shiawassee County Michigan fruits and vegetables vegetables tomato diseases vegetable gardening

1 Response

Keeping tomato diseases in check is a common problem for many tomato growers. Solarizing the soil is a positive step. Here are some other steps you can take to help keep your plants healthy.

Inspect plants regularly. Diseases, if caught early, can be slowed if not stopped. Look for insects that could vector diseases.

Sanitation is an important factor for soil born diseases. Make sure you clean up plant debris in the fall to reduce conditions conducive to disease survival. Burn or dispose of diseased materials (Do not compost). If you start your own plants indoors be sure to sanitize any pots/trays that have been used before. Keep weeds down(especially solanaceous weeds like night shade.) Using plastic mulch with drip irrigation can help prevent pathogens splashing up on lower leaves as well as keeping the foliage dry. The mulch will also help with weed control. Keep your pruners sanitized, They can easily spread diseases.

Handle plants only when dry. It is very easy to spread diseases when plants are wet.

Anticipate diseases. Routine treatment with fungicides (organic and inorganic) works! They work much better as a preventative.

Resistant varieties can help. Plant different varieties since some respond differently to certain pathogens. This can help assure you will get some survivors.

Keep plants healthy.

Here are some helpful links:

Early-Blight

Late Blight

Organic-Management-of-Early-Blight-on-Tomato

Organic-Management-of-Late-Blight-on-Tomato

I hope this is helpful,