Fungus on Tomato plants

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  #1  
Old 04-17-12, 02:59 PM
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Fungus on Tomato plants

I have grown tomato plants in the same spot in my garden for many years. Each year they have been affected by something that appears to be a fungus. It starts with black spots on the leaves which then yellow and die. I also see the spots on the branches and stems of the plants (usually spreading from bottom to top of the plant). I have tried to control it each year by cutting off the affected leaves and branches but ultimately I am left with some pretty ugly plants.

What I have read suggests that the fungus spores remain in the ground over the winter due to plant debris and other organic matter. I would like to continue to plant in this area so I am looking for ways to end this cycle.

Three ideas come to mind but any other suggestions are welcome.

1. sterilize the ground by placing black plastic over it for a few weeks when the weather warms up. This would, hopefully, kill off the fungus. I would remove the plastic and begin planting (probably a little late in the season).

2. cover the ground with a landscape fabric to reduce contamination from the soil to plants growing in it (doesn't seem quite right to say it that way). I assume you cover the ground with the fabric and then punch holes and put the plants in the ground. I am not sure how this would change my watering and fertilizing plans.

3. I have seen suggestions about using a copper based spray on the plants (brand name Serenade?) to reduce the fungus and keep it from spreading.

As a last resort, I could use pots or a raised bed over the existing dirt but this seems silly when I have a nice bed ready to go.

Can someone offer some guidance on this?

- Peter
 
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Old 05-03-12, 09:13 AM
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No ideas or suggestions anyone?

- Peter
 
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Old 06-13-12, 11:57 AM
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No answers pjaffe? I have a similar problem in that I have limited space to plant tomatoes - and have to use the same space year after year. Noty sure how I can do that with all I have read about not planting them in ths same spot.
 
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Old 06-13-12, 12:38 PM
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I went ahead with using landscape fabric. I cut "x" shaped holes and put my platns through them. Covered the whole thing in mulch to keep the fabric from too much UV. Looks like the plants are thriving so far but it is early. I'll update again in late summer. As for using the same spot repeatedly, I do add a few bags of compost each year.

- Peter
 
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Old 06-13-12, 12:44 PM
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Do a search on tomato blight.

Preventing and Treating Tomato Blight | Veggie Gardener

Mike NJ
 
 

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