Hello! Thanks for taking the time to help me out! My tomato plants have been looking quite sad the past week or two, and I can't figure out the problem. I've thought it was over-watering, so I didn't water for a week. They did not improve. So I watered them liberally on Saturday, and again on Wednesday, and they still have not perked up.
I know that in order to correctly diagnose the problem, you'll need to know a little background on my setup:
I am a first time soil grower (I dabbled with an indoor hydroponics tomato setup several years ago), and live in New Orleans (read: very hot, very humid). I built a 9'x3'x1' raised bed in my backyard. The location of the bed in a spot that gets the most sunlight, which unfortunately is only about 5-6 hours a day (of direct sun). I put a layer of cardboard down under the bed, and then filled with soil.
I filled the raised bed with 10 cu.ft. potting soil, 6 cu.ft. topsoil, 4 cu.ft "premium garden soil" (I.e. Scotts), and 2 cu.ft of manuer/humus. I then broadcast about 2-2.5 lbs of 8-15-15 fertilizer and worked it into about the top 8 inches.
I stated my seed indoors around the 1st of March, and planted them around March 28 (they were sitting on my patio prior to planting). I planted 2 beefsteak tomato plants, 2 eggplants, 2 california bell peppers, 2 cauliflower, 1 serrano pepper, 5 celery, and numerous onion/red onion/green onion. Everything looked great for the first couple of weeks (aside from a few bug problems, which I believe I've controlled by using Sevin dust). The tomatoes have absolutely sky-rocketed in germs of growth in the past month. I've also watered them with some Miracle-grow about once every 8 or 9 days (at first just 1 gallon for the whole bed, but more recently I did 2 gallons).
I was originally watering my plants every day, sometimes 2 times a day when they were young. I've heard that tomatoes require about 1" of water a week, so I began to cut back the watering when I noticed the tomato leaves looked saggy. But they haven't returned since then (around 4-15). And just recently, my serrano pepper plant has began to droop a little too. I don't know if it is a true 'wilt', but it looks sad nonetheless. I've tried not watering them for a week, but after 5 or 6 days, I felt the soil (at about 7" deep) and it was dry, so I watered again.
Anyway, on with the pics:
Here is the cauliflower:
So, can anyone give me some advice? Am I watering too much? Not enough? What gives? I don't want to lose this crop because of my lack of experience......
Thanks a lot for anyone who can help!!!!