CaliforniaGardener
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Re: TOMATO BLOSSOM DROP - FLOWERS FALLING FROM TOMATOES

I too am in southern California and in the heat of summer it is quite difficult for the plants even with a lot of water. The flowers do see to fall. I've found that heavy pruning and cutting off a lot of excess plant helps the tomato out and put more energy towards the blossoms. Also make sure to give your plants a shake so they are pollinated. Your soil may also benefit from more calcium or bone meal. At least if you keep the tomatoes alive through the summer they should start blossoming and making tomatoes in the fall or winter again.
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peej42
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Re: TOMATO BLOSSOM DROP - FLOWERS FALLING FROM TOMATOES

Could be that they are not being pollinated, a common problem under glass, the pollen falls at about noon so using a hose and your thumb thoroughly drench the whole plant to help them set. Also helps reduce the temperature if it is too hot, 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit is nice. :)

nosebleed21
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Re: TOMATO BLOSSOM DROP - FLOWERS FALLING FROM TOMATOES

I experienced blossom drop too i ilve in the philippines and its summer and temp reaches 34 degrees celcius i read some water 1-2 times but im not sure if im watering enough. My tomatoes are in big plastic pots should i let water drain from the pot to ensure its well watered?what is deep watering?currently i moved them some where with a little shade as leaves started to curl too so it only gets sun exposure 50% of the day,did i do the right thing?

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feldon30
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Re: TOMATO BLOSSOM DROP - FLOWERS FALLING FROM TOMATOES

Tomatoes typically will not pollinate if overnight temperatures will not drop below 75°F (24°C) and humidity is over 80%. Also, very high temperatures during the day of 95°F (35°C) can denature the pollen in the flowers. Unless you have a few cool evenings, tomato plants generally will not set fruit in the summer heat.

I am half-joking / half-serious when I say that if I lived in the Philippines, I would air condition my tomato plants for 48 hours twice a month just to give them time to set fruit.
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Juliuskitty
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Re:

That second picture sure looks like leaf edema. And the poster increased the watering when it was seen.
TheWaterbug wrote:Hmmm. My plants are now 4-5 feet tall, and they've been in the ground since early March. No fruit yet :(

I'm watering 1-2 times/week, and the plants look mostly healthy:

Image

I haven't fertilized at all, and I didn't put any new amendments in the hole when I planted this year, so excess N probably isn't the cause. This _is_ the same site where I grew tomatoes successfully last year, so it's possible that I've depleted some other nutrients, but the plants are growing pretty well otherwise, so I didn't think they were lacking anything.

One thing that does looks suspicious is _some_ of the leaves are crinkly:

Image

That was about 2 weeks ago, and I increased the watering frequency from 1/week to 2/week since then, but I still have no fruit.

The weather's been in the high 60s to high 70s. No 80s yet, nor anything approaching cold.

I have some 10-10-5 liquid fertilizer that I could apply. Would that help or hurt?
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imafan26
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Re: TOMATO BLOSSOM DROP - FLOWERS FALLING FROM TOMATOES

If you live in very hot areas, it is best to pick a few heat resistant tomatoes. Like Heatwave II, Solarfire,Creole, Arkansas Traveler, Souix ,Super Souix, Heatmaster, Florida 91 and some of the cherries will do much better in the heat than large tomatoes. Sungold, supersweet 100, sunsugar, and yellow pear.

Most of these tomatoes will set up to 90 degrees and a few of them will set at even higher temperatures.

I have grown HeatwaveII, Celebrity, Creole, sunsugar, sungold, sweet mojo, and supersweet 100 and they did well. Arkansas traveler, Souix, and Solar fire did not do as well. I do want to try Arkansas Traveler and Super Sioux again because they supposedly do grow here. Solar fire grew but is not resistant to other problems like fusarium and nematodes which are prevalent here.

Choose the best tomatoes for your location. Heat resistance is a must for hot areas unless you grow your tomatoes in the off season but you will also need to consider disease resistance as well. Flavor and texture usually take a hit, but some of these tasted pretty good. Sunsugar, sungold, sweet mojo and supersweet 100 are all cherries and very sweet. Sungold was only sweet when it was fully ripe and it was very prone to cracking. Creole is a medium sized tomato, it tastes pretty good, but seeds are not that easy to come by. Celebrity is a commercial variety. It is a good slicer and good producer. It is determinate, it won't win taste tests. HeatwaveII produced when all of the other tomatoes quit, they were better than store tomatoes.

Tomatoes will start to fruit between 70-90 days. They will grow lush if given too much nitrogen fertilizer at the expense of fruiting.

I grew tomatoes in 18 gallon self watering containers and they did very well. The water reservoir kept the vines from wilting in the heat and no BER.
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feldon30
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Re: TOMATO BLOSSOM DROP - FLOWERS FALLING FROM TOMATOES

This is just my personal opinion, but if my choice was growing no tomatoes or growing Celebrity, Solar Fire, Heatwave, Heatmaster, and other "heat setter" types. I just wouldn't grow tomatoes, I'd build an air-conditioned greenhouse, or I'd move.

I realize that Hawai'i doesn't really have a winter or cool season, and so you don't have the luxury of starting "earlier", but in Southern parts of the US, this is a very real option. When I lived in Houston, I planted very large plants (12-14 inches tall) as early as I possibly could (late February), and then protected them from frost. Because the soil temperature stayed high, my plants took off. I was able to grow Brandywine, Stump of the World, and any number of "fussy heirlooms" and got a good harvest. But timing was absolutely crucial.

I do like Arkansas Traveler though. ;)
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VeggieGardenGal
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Re: TOMATO BLOSSOM DROP - FLOWERS FALLING FROM TOMATOES

Hi, I am in Southern California (Inland Empire Area) and have been able to successfully grow tomatoes. Last year I watered every third day... not daily. I got a very high yield of fruit. Even when temps got into the high 90s and over 100.

I did experience some splitting later in the season but I figured the cause was the high temps and irregular watering schedule. The split tomatoes were still consumed and used in canning. I actually grew way to many tomatoes than I could handle.

As suggested by other comments... I think it is calcium deficient soil causing the flower drop and the type of tomatoe plant. Otherwise your plants look good to me.

BTW... as suggested Celebrity grow well for me in hot so cal. Plus I fertilize with compost tea twice a month.

Now that a month has past, have your plants produced any fruit?

imafan26
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Re: TOMATO BLOSSOM DROP - FLOWERS FALLING FROM TOMATOES

I have learned a few things growing tomatoes in a wam climate

1. Always get cultivars resistant to the prevalent diseases and virus and pests. For me this means getting tomatoes that are minimum VFFFN. Fungal disease and nematodes are a constant for me.

2. Get heat resistant varieties. The average temperature here is 88 degrees. Mid sixties in the daytime would be the lowest close to the century mark would be the highest. Creole, Arkansas Traveler, Eva Purple Ball, Heatwave II did best. Brandywine also did very well although I had to plant it in a pot and put it on a fungicide program since it lacks the fungal resistance and I did not know how it does against nematodes. It did stop blooming when the temps hit the 90's but started producing again when the temperatures dropped. Cherry tomatoes usually do better in the heat. Red cherry, sungold, and sunsugar did well for me.

You might try Solar Fire and Sunmaster or any of the heat tolerant cultivars developed by Florida. Some of them will still set in the high 90's. I could not grow Solar fire, it lacked the disease resistance.

Even heat resistant tomatoes will sometimes drop flowers when in distress, but will hold on to them longer than most.

3. You may have to water twice a day in mid summer or use self watering containers at least an 18 gallon container with a 5 gallon reservoir. Tomatoes can take up to 4 gallons of water a day. Mulch all around the tomatoes in the ground and even in pots to slow the evaporation from the soil. Put drip irrigation under the mulch.

4. You can keep the tomatoes cool a couple of ways a) Put up some temporary shading. I have a tent frame and cover it with 47% shade cloth. b) If you have a sprinkler mist the area during midday for 5 minutes just to cool things down. c) If you can move the tomatoes to the east side of the house and shade it from the afternoon sun or d) hide the tomatoes. Put taller plants on the south side of the tomatoes. If they are in pots, group smaller potted plants around it or double pot to keep the roots shaded and cool. The other plants around it increases humidity and decreases temperature.

Tomatoes wilting in the middle of the day is normal, it is how plants cope with heat, but they should stand up again at the end of the day.

Blossom end rot is another thing to watch out for but is not a problem with self watering containers and a full reservoir. No additional calcium required. The issue is usually not an absolute calcium deficiency but the plants inability to move calcium within the plant when watering is uneven. The plant steals calcium from the developing fruit to save itself.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

imafan26
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Re: TOMATO BLOSSOM DROP - FLOWERS FALLING FROM TOMATOES

Julius, I think you did what I often do. If you give your tomatoes too much nitrogen for too long you get healthy leaves and not much fruit. Hit the plant with some higher phosphorus fertilizer and no nitrogen and back off on the water a little bit to force it to go into survival mode and bloom.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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Gary350
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Re: TOMATO BLOSSOM DROP - FLOWERS FALLING FROM TOMATOES

Blossom drop is caused by low potassium. Plants make lots of blossoms if there is not enough fertilizer in the soil plants can not make many tomatoes so the plants drop the extra blossoms. I put 1 cup of wood ash in an 8" deep hole before planting tomatoes. I never have blossom drop plants often have 40 tomatoes on each plant. Too much nitrogen on tomato plants produces large plants and few tomatoes. I never water garden plants it is not a problem for tomatoes even if there it no rain for a month. After a big rain tomatoes sometimes split from too much water.

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