help with tomato and pepper blossoms dying

Asked July 8, 2020, 4:07 PM EDT

Hello- my tomato and pepper plants have blossomed frequently and well. BUT, in the case of the peppers (yellow, red and green), the blossoms start to produce a fruit and stop altogether. They are not producing anything. What should I do? The tomato plants are doing the same thing to a lesser degree except for the heirloom plants. In the case of the heirloom plants, as they grow taller the leaves curl over and seem to have a "fuzzy substance" on them. What can I do to address this. Thank you

Yamhill County Oregon

4 Responses

Hi and thanks for contacting Ask an Expert.
I have some questions for you in order to answer your questions. Are the plants producing an actual fruit but it is not continuing to grow? then you say they are not producing anything, so do you mean there are no fruits/veggies on either types of plants?
There is a problem called Blossom End Rot when the tomatoes and peppers bloom but drop the petals and then dry out. It can be caused by high temperatures both day and night, stress from cold to hot and not enough moisture. Tomatoes and peppers should be have moist soil, but not soggy wet. There is a spray you can use on your blossoms called Blossom End Rot. You can find it at your local nursery stores.
If they are actually producing tomatoes and peppers but not continuing to grow then I would add compost and an organic fertilizer and keep the soil moist. Without actually seeing the plants I cannot be more specific than that.
About the fuzzy substance on the heirloom plants, that could be a mold or fungus but I cannot confirm that. The curling of the leaves is something that can be caused by herbicide drift (someone spraying on a windy day and it hits your plants) or aphids or white flies on the undersides of the leaves sucking out the juice of the leaves.
Insecticidal soap spray on all sides of the leaves will kill insects. The plant will grow beyond the herbicidal damage and should be okay.
The white fuzzy substance (fungal disease? or?) may be contained with sprays. You can find lime/sulfur and neem oil sprays both organic, online or in stores. Neem oil that is mixed with other ingredients often has some toxic elements so I would purchase pure Neem oil (online) and follow the instructions for mixing it.
If you would like to send some pictures, I might be able to discern further what type of problems you are having.

Hi again,
Sorry about this but Blossom End Rot is when the bottom of the fruit are rotting. It is a calcium deficiency. I meant to say that when they blossom and don't produce a fruit it is called Blossom Drop. There is a spray for the blossoms that will keep them in place and that usually cures the problem of producing fruit. Sheryl

Hi- Thank you for responding to my questions. I am planning to address all issues this afternoon as suggested. I will work on sending you a photo(s) of the heirloom plants so that you might be able to asses the problem better.

After following through with your information, I will watch my plants (all vegetables giving my grief) and report back to you what progress I have made.

Again, Thank you, Kathy Hurd

Dear Kathy,
Feel free to contact us at any time. Our goal is to make gardening easier. Looking forward to seeing those pictures.