mrocza
Newly Registered
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2009 8:31 pm
Location: NY

What is destroying my tomatoes? Verticillium Wilt? images

I live in upstate NY. I am a beginner gardener. My tomatoes are showing signs of some disease. The leaves are getting brown and wilted on the bottom of the plant and I am noting brown spots on stems. I am sorry for my English. Please let me know what can it be and what can I do to stop it from spreading? Thanks
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dees
Newly Registered
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:52 am

Your plants have a nasty disease called Late Blight (Phytophthora infestans). :(
This disease spreads very rapidly, especially in damp weather, and is very hard to stop. Even leaves and stems that look healthy now will have brown spots soon because it takes a few days for symptoms to show up after the mold invades the leaf. A plant that shows as much infection as the one in your pics is probably doomed. You can try removing any leaves and stems that have brown patches. Then spray the rest of the plant with the fungicide of your choice. But the only fungicides that are safe for food crops are preventative, meaning that you have to spray them before the plant becomes infected. They won't kill any mold that is already growing in the leaves. There are systemic fungicides that can kill the mold after it infects the leaf but those fungicides will also be taken into the fruit and make it unsafe to eat.

More info w/ pics:
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/07/090701163647.htm
https://blogs.cornell.edu/hort/2009/06/26/late-blight-a-serious-disease-killing-tomatoes-and-potatoes-this-year/
https://www.reuters.com/article/scienceNews/idUSTRE56963J20090710?sp=true

cynthia_h
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 7501
Joined: Tue May 06, 2008 11:02 pm
Location: El Cerrito, CA

Earlier, the webmaster posted an updated article on late blight (Phytophthora infestans) at

https://www.helpfulgardener.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=17344

We've had an extensive discussion on late blight, too, and that thread's url is in the above discussion.

I'm sorry not to have better news. :(

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

mrocza
Newly Registered
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2009 8:31 pm
Location: NY

Thank you for responding to my question. Unfortunately, all of my tomatoes plants show signs of this disease. My potatoes and peony are also infected. Is it safe to eat potatoes. It looks like only the leaves were effected. What should I do do with paeony? How to protect my garden for the next year? Thank you so much for all responses. :(

dees
Newly Registered
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:52 am

Pack an inch or two of extra soil around the potato stems where they go into the ground to close off any gaps around the stems, and make sure all of the potato tubers have been hilled up so they are covered with soil too. That will stop the spores of the disease from going down into the ground to infect the potatoes. Then cut down the potato tops and the tomatoes, put them into plastic bags, seal the bags shut so the disease spores can't get out, and put the bags in the trash so they will be taken far away from your garden. After you remove the tomatoes and potato tops, wait at least three weeks before you dig up the potatoes. That will give the potato skins time to harden and help keep the disease spores from infecting them. If you dig up the potatoes too soon, any spores that are resting on the ground will get on the skin of the potatoes and spoil them. The spores cannot live more than about two weeks without a living plant to live on. So if you wait three weeks after you take away the tomatoes and potato tops, the spores will die and they can't infect your potatoes when you dig them up.

For next year, treat your tomatoes with a fungicide before you plant them in the ground, and start treating your potatoes as soon as they are about 6 inches high. Continue to treat them once a week after that. That will help keep them from getting infected.

I don't know what to tell you about your peonies. The Phytophthora that infects peonies is a different Phytophthora from the one that infects tomatoes and potatoes.

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