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My poor tomato plants

by Jenine
(Calgary, Alberta, Canada )

Plant #1

Plant #1

Hello,

I am in need of some help.

I think all of my tomato plants that are in individual pots have caught something or at least something is happening to them that I am at a completely loss about.

The new growth right at the top, all of the leaves are curling or twisting. It eventually makes its way down the branch. I have now tossed 5 of the 8 plants.

I just purchased 3 more because my boys and I are really disappointed in having no tomatoes to pick at this summer. These new plants are starting to show the same problems.

Can you please tell me what is possibly going on with my plants? We have not sprayed our lawn in months, so I don’t think any herbicide has affected them. I live in a zone 3a. Our climate is very dry. I live in Calgary, Canada.

The plants get 6-8 hrs of light a day. I water them quite a bit so there is no chance they are under watered. I have been growing tomato plants for years and this is the first time I have ever seen this.

Plant #1 is one that has been dealing with this for a couple of weeks. Plant #2 is just starting to deal with this. It has two branches that are really drooping.

Any help would be truly appreciated!

Thank you!

Jenine

Comments for My poor tomato plants

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Jun 17, 2021
Not Immune
by: Jacki Cammidge, Certified Horticulturist

Even Certified Horticulturists can have problems like this. I chucked my entire crop two years ago (all purchased plants) due to a similar issue. The leaves actually rolled up in this case. After a lot of angst, I gave up.

I don't know if this means we will never be able to grow tomatoes again, or what. My suggestion would be to grow your own from seed in future, from a reputable source, not ones you've saved. I don't know if this will help, but it's a start.

I think that if you have ever rescued volunteer tomato plants out of the compost, you run the risk of this issue happening. We don't know where the seeds come from when you buy plants, but often, people will try to economize on the seeds (which is silly, because they're so cheap anyway).

Make sure that any tomato seeds or plants you buy are a variety that is bred for cool seasons, with variable climate. Not all tomatoes are the same.

Okay so that doesn't help to prevent it this time.

There are a couple of suggestions out there, including not over pruning, making sure that excess moisture drains away, and avoiding over fertilizing.

As your plants are showing new growth, my feeling is that this is a temporary thing, due to cool nights, and there's not much you can do about that now.

Give it time, let them grow a bit more. I might use row cover to protect them from any more cool temperatures, but make sure to take it off when the flowers open so the insects can get to them to pollinate them (otherwise you'll have to be the 'bee' and pollinate them by hand).

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