davefromwestchester
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Location: Hastings on Hudson, NY

Some mid-summer questions

Hi all, greetings from way too sunny and dry Westchester county....but no real complaints!

A quick update and a couple of questions...everything is growing very well, zuchinni, cukes, tomatoes, herbs, some green peppers and even carrots. The zuchinni are enormous, harvested about 5 or 6 si far, well over 18 in and 6-8 in in diameter....monsters. I hate zuchinni but my wife loves them.

So for my questions:

1. Still having problems with 2 or 3 of the cuke plants, yellowing mottled leaves, but thereare cukes growing on the vines, I was told it was a leaf fungus from too much watering on the leaves, so I stopped doing that but the infection has continued on those plants. The other 3-4 plants are deep green and in good shape...should I rip up the up infected ones?, I mean we're going to have way way way too many cukes as it is. Though I hate ripping them up...let them be? I'm worried the infection will spread. I keep taking off the infected leaves but it doesn't do any good.

2. As for the tomatoes..most are 4-5 ft high, all bearing green fruit, it's going to be a huge harvest...the only problem is toward the bottom of some of the plants are also spotted mottled leaves, yellow with dark spots, along with some dead branches and leaves. Ok to just prune those off? Also, the branches are so tangled in general, very lush, is it ok to prune some of the excess branches, in addition to all of the suckers?, or is that not good.

That's it for now...any advice is deeply appreciated!

Cheers!

David and Sophie
Hastings on Hudson

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rainbowgardener
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1) yes, definitely if you have plenty, I would rip out the infected ones, though I understand it is hard for a gardener to harden their heart like that. The infection can definitely spread to your other plants.

2) It is normal for the bottom leaves on the tomato plant to turn yellow and wither. They are used up and the plant is moving energy to the upper leaves that are still in sun. Just remove them. Shouldn't hurt the plant to prune out a few excess branches.
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davefromwestchester
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Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2011 1:32 am
Location: Hastings on Hudson, NY

rainbowgardener wrote:1) yes, definitely if you have plenty, I would rip out the infected ones, though I understand it is hard for a gardener to harden their heart like that. The infection can definitely spread to your other plants.

2) It is normal for the bottom leaves on the tomato plant to turn yellow and wither. They are used up and the plant is moving energy to the upper leaves that are still in sun. Just remove them. Shouldn't hurt the plant to prune out a few excess branches.
Thanks so much for your response, and yes, I am leaning toward removing them -- my wife however reluctant to do this, she so much wants all of the plants to succeed! She even said maybe we should wait for a second opinion when shared what you said. But I'm going to do...steel my courage to the sticking point, I can use that area to transplant some potted tomatoes!

an aside: I was watching Shark Tank last night, the show where entrpreneur investor types invest $$$ in new businesses and inventions...I was inspired to inventing the perfect tomato stake mechanism and go on that show. An adjustable, sturdy, lightweight cage type structure that can expand with the plant and adjust to branches and growth. We can put a man on the moon but we can't invent the perfect tomato stake mechanism!

Thanks again.

David

davefromwestchester
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Posts: 33
Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2011 1:32 am
Location: Hastings on Hudson, NY

rainbowgardener wrote:1) yes, definitely if you have plenty, I would rip out the infected ones, though I understand it is hard for a gardener to harden their heart like that. The infection can definitely spread to your other plants.

2) It is normal for the bottom leaves on the tomato plant to turn yellow and wither. They are used up and the plant is moving energy to the upper leaves that are still in sun. Just remove them. Shouldn't hurt the plant to prune out a few excess branches.
Dear Rainbowgardner

So we spent a relatively upsetting afternoon extricating the infected plants. Very emotional! And confusing given the nature and complexity of cuke vines. Final question, if there a fungicide you recomend to spray on the remaining healthy cuke plants...some of their leave are beginning to turn a little and we'd hate to lose the entire "crop". Thanks.,

DR

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rainbowgardener
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plant anti-fungals

Let me know when your expanding tomato cages are ready, I want some! :)

Is it powdery mildew on your cukes? A milk solution (50% milk, 50% water, maybe add a spoonful of yoghurt with active cultures, let sit at room temp for a few hours, spray) should help for that. Works best preventatively or at the first sign of problems.

If not powdery mildew try a baking soda solution with a little bit of soap added (a table spoon of baking soda in a gallon of water with a few drops of soap).

Or 3% hydrogen peroxide straight from the bottle or Neem oil or compost tea.

Commercially available plant fungicides: Remedy (from Bonide) is potassium bicarbonate (the baking soda above is sodium bicarbonate). Or Serenade, which contains a naturally occurring bacterium called Bacillus subtilis, which works against many types of fungi.

Whatever you use, try it on one plant first. Some plants are sensitive to some compounds and can be burned by them. Don't spray anything on your whole garden with out testing it. And be sure you cover the whole leaf, including the underside.
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

lululovesu
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Powder Mildew

I have a sage plant that I brought in from outside when it got cold, it has now become gangly (which I have read that can happen), but now it seems to have the powdery mildew thing going on (wish I knew how this happens), I occasionally get a spot on my aloe vera plant. As for the sage, it has been there for a little while since I didn't know what was going on. Will these things work now? I believe I have everything but milk (it's gross), I do have a little dairy yogurt in the fridge I was going to use to make coconut yogurt. Could I mix that with some water? Anyway. What is the best one to start with or should I even bother at this point = (

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