green_2013
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Tomato Leaves Curl

Hello,

My cherry tomato leaves have been curling into a ball to the point it looks a bit like the ends of a vine. I have attached some photos and hope someone can help to diagnose the problem. The plants are very unhealthy and have a lot of die-off. Everything I have grown in this potting mix has been stunted. I have another plant which was planted in different soil and is perfectly healthy and producing lots of fruit. This plant is in the same area as the others.

Let me know if you need any more details.
Many thanks for your time.

P.S. I hope this is the correct section to post this in.
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DSC_7198.jpeg
DSC_7197.jpeg

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rainbowgardener
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Re: Tomato Leaves Curl

This is fine, as far as where to post. You are in the Tomato section.

It would help if you tell us where you are. (Presumably some place very warm, since it looks like it is outdoors. My garden still has snow and ice on it.) Also show a picture of the whole plant, with a bit of its soil and surrounds.

But, I agree with what you have shown us so far, the plant besides the leaf problem looks generally unhealthy. Stretched out and spindly, like maybe it isn't getting enough light (Is it in full sun?), not very leafy and not a very healthy color.

Various things can cause tomato leaves to curl, but yours aren't really curled, they are rolled (as you say into a ball). I haven't seen that before. The closest I have seen is from herbicide damage. Were the plants that look like that sprayed with anything?
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

green_2013
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Re: Tomato Leaves Curl

Thankyou for the reply. I live in Australia (Sydney area), so it is hot - middle of Summer here.
It is full sun for good part of the day, but not in the late afternoon. The healthy tomato plant which is planted in different soil, is located in the same area and is producing lots of good fruit. Infact the healthy plant is sometimes partially shaded by a shrub, so I feel the issue with the plant is probably not sunlight. As you describe, the unhealthy plants are spindly with leaves rolled into a ball with some leaves yellowing/die-off. I will update later with a photo of the entire plant.

I do not spray any herbicides. I aim to grow as organic as possible.
However when searching the internet and looking at photos I noticed that all the tomato plants that looked like mine (leaves rolled into a ball) related to articles or forum posts talking about herbicide damage, particularly from manure in the soil, or from the mulch. From my limited research this is what I feared may be the case, but wanted to hear from those with a lot more experience.

I have been very unhappy with the latest potting mix I have bought and everything has been stunted as well as unhealthy. I highly suspect that the potting mix may be the culprit - possibly contaminated with herbicide residue from the compost or manure it contains. I also added some sheep manure (from a bag) and this may be a culprit. I may be able to narrow these 2 items down with a little backyard 'experimenting'.

Thanks again for your helpful response.

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applestar
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Re: Tomato Leaves Curl

Yes. I have heard that testing by sowing beans or peas in the suspect growing medium depending on the weather is a good way since the seedlings will exhibit symptoms right away.

Another cause of similar damage is TYLCV tomato yellow leaf curl virus spread by whiteflies. but I have no personal experience since this is more common in warmer/hotter areas than here

Good luck!
Learning never ends because we can share what we've learned. And in sharing our collective experiences, we gain deeper understanding of what we learned.

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rainbowgardener
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Re: Tomato Leaves Curl

I looked at curly leaf virus images before I posted and they didn't look the same to me. Here's one sample

Image
https://vegetablemdonline.ppath.cornell. ... 41A_02.jpg

but reading the description, it still seems possible, but not entirely fitting:

Infected tomato plants initially show stunted and erect or upright plant growth; plants infected at an early stage of growth will show severe stunting. However, the most diagnostic symptoms are those in leaves.

Leaves of infected plants are small and curl upward; and show strong crumpling and interveinal and marginal yellowing. The internodes of infected plants become shortened and, together with the stunted growth, plants often take on a bushy appearance, which is sometimes referred to as 'bonsai' or broccoli'-like growth. Flowers formed on infected plants commonly do not develop and fall off (abscise). Fruit production is dramatically reduced, particularly when plants are infected at an early age, and it is not uncommon for losses of 100% to be experienced in fields with heavily infected plants
https://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/r783103311.html

but one thing that doesn't seem to fit is "shortened internodes" "bushy appearance." Something else I looked at said thickened shoots. The pictures of your plant showed lengthened internodes with spindly shoots and whatever the opposite of bushy is.

So I would still be looking in to the herbicide possibility.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

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