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Monday, August 27, 2012

Leaves Burning Up on Cherry Tomato Plant in Container

This is not the readers tomato plant. These
are some leaf spots on tomato that were
never identified but probably diseased. Make
sure your leaf scorch is not a disease problem.
Q. Hi, I just read your gardening article in the Summerlin South View paper and thought I would take a shot at sending you an email with some concerns I have with my tomato plants. I moved down here a year ago from MN and was an avid gardener up there.  Down here?  It's a different story.  I have cherry tomato plants on my patio.  Not always in direct sunlight, but I water every day.  They seem like the leaves are burning up on the plants and the fruit has tapered off.  Any suggestions or ideas?  If you aren't able to answer this, can you point me int he right direction please? 

A. I dont know how you prepared your soil for the container but that is important. So make sure it is a good quality soil if you prepare it yourself or buy it in bags. Tomato production tapers off when temperatures consistently stay above 95F. Tomatoes and many other vegetables do not set very well under high temperatures. As temperatures drop, they will begin to set again.Vegetables that set fruit will need at least 6 hours of strong sunlight every day.
Morning sun is preferable to afternoon sun because usually afternoon sun also means a hotter microclimate. Direct sun on containers can fry a soil, particularly if the container is small, single-layered, dry when it gets the direct sunlight and dark colored.

I would double pot containers (one container inside another) to help reduce direct sunlight on the growing container. Put the plants in direct sunlight in the morning hours, make sure you use a good soil each time you plant and modify it with good compost.

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