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Earl K
Green Thumb
Posts: 351
Joined: Sun Mar 22, 2009 1:44 am
Location: Melbourne ,Fl.

Blossom drop

Hello all,new here and new to growin.I have three different type tom. plants and gettin blossom drop on all.growin in 5gal. buckets w/holes and rocks in bottom for drainage.water every other day,growing in potting soil
w/fert.Already have fruit but worried bout loosing some due to blossoms falling off. any suggestions. thanks

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hendi_alex
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Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2008 11:58 am
Location: Central Sand Hills South Carolina

If you are not having a lot of bee activity, be sure and tap the blossoms. I tap mine and then tap those on other plants with the same finger so as to help with the exchange of pollen.
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex

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tomatodude
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Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2009 8:57 pm
Location: Texas

Blossom drop is usually caused when night time temps are above 75 and daytime highs hit the 90's...this causes the pollen to become sticky and hampers pollination.....causing the blossoms to wither, and drop.

As Alex posted, you can assist pollination by lightly tapping the stem of the plant as all tomato are self pollinating by means of wind or mechanical methods.

You mentioned that you were growing in 5 gal buckets...I hope you meant using "Potting Mix" and not potting soil. Potting soil will get too compact and cause all kinds of problems. Be sure to use a layer of mulch ( 3-4 inches thick) on top of your buckets to conserve and regulate moisture.
It's not what you Grow, it's How you grow it.

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rainbowgardener
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Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 11:04 pm
Location: TN/GA 7b

blossom drop

Tomatoes drop their blossoms to concentrate on the plant surviving anytime they are significantly stressed. As noted one of the commonest causes of that stress is heat. Tomatoes grow best if daytime temperatures range between 70 F and 85 F . While tomato plants can tolerate more extreme temperatures for short periods, several days or especially nights with temps outside the ideal range can cause blossom drop. Select heat a heat-tolerant ("heat set") tomato variety for areas with long periods of hot or humid weather.
But cold can be a stress also. Night time temps below 55 F will stress the plants --protect them with a cover at night.
Tomatoes need some help to pollinate. Either insects, wind or hand shaking of the flowers is necessary to carry the pollen from the anthers to the stigma. During weather extremes, there are often no insect pollinators in the garden.
Over fertilizing can also be a stress. If your soil is healthy, with adequate organic matter you should only need to fertilize (eg add extra amendments) when planting and mid season.
If humidity is either too high or too low, it interferes with the release of pollen and with pollen’s ability to stick to the stigma. So pollination will not occur. If humidity is too low, hose the foliage during the day. This will both cool the plant and raise the humidity. This is not recommended in areas with high humidity or when fungus diseases are present. .
Tomatoes have very deep roots. Shallow watering will stress and weaken the plants. Water them deeply once a week or so, depending on conditions.

Talk to your local reputable nursery -- there are a zillion different varieties, lots of which have been developed to cope with whatever the local conditions are--- heat, cold, humidity, etc. It helps to grow a variety that is adapted to your area.

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Earl K
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Posts: 351
Joined: Sun Mar 22, 2009 1:44 am
Location: Melbourne ,Fl.

thanks for all the advice,i tapped all blossoms lightly the day of first reply. seems like this was my problem.sounds soon but havent lost any in 5-6 days and was loosing 1-2 a day before.once again ,thanks for saving many tasty maters

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