limumomma
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Location: Pittsburg, KS

Leaves Curling on Tomato Plants

Every year since we have been here we plant tomatoes. They come along great until they begin to bear, then the leaves begin to curl, they dry out, turn brown, and die. The plant keeps growing and bearing, and the new leaves curl, turn brown and die. We have moved them around in the garden and it still happens.

What is causing this and can we stop it this year? If we cannot stop it this year, can we prevent it from happening next year? If so, how?

Thank You!

[img]https://i976.photobucket.com/albums/ae250/limumomma/Tomato%20plants%20with%20curling%20leaves%202010/IM000737.jpg[/img][/url]
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pizzarrhea
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It could be plenty of things. The growing environment, herbicide damage, or viral infection which probably could be ruled out seeing as you've moved the plant locations around and still had the same results. Are the fruits beared maturing and doing fine?

731greener101
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Location: West Tennessee Zone 6b

curling

I have the same issue.I have researched this and as stated there are several causes.As far as I can tell it is a process of elimination as to specific cause as to specific solution.Given what I am confident to as growing media,water,and nutrients I feel my issue is 95+daytime and 79 degree nighttime temps coupled with winds of 5-25 mph.I cannot change the weather...sooo.i will wait it out.Once we have more friendly conditions I may allow suckers to grow to replace the old leaves.Greener

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Gary350
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If the leaves curl during the day then straighten out at night the problem is the heat. Tomatoes do that when it is extremely hot I think it is the plants way to shade itself from the sun. I use to cover my tomato plants with black screen wire it blocks out about 50% of the sun but now days I plant my tomatos very close together so they croud themself enough to shade each other.

If the leaves curl and stay curled all the time even after dark the problem is too much nitrogen.

731greener101
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curling

Yes my plants continue to curl after sundown.I have don a soil test kit and the results show slightly low nitrogen level.That being said should I try flushing my raised bed box?Greener

limumomma
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Curling Leaves on Tomato Plants

pizzarrhea wrote:It could be plenty of things. The growing environment, herbicide damage, or viral infection which probably could be ruled out seeing as you've moved the plant locations around and still had the same results. Are the fruits beared maturing and doing fine?
Yes, the fruit does grow and mature nicely. That is what is so puzzling to me. I read one answer that thought it might be too much nitrogen. What do we do to get the nitrogen down if the levels do come out too high?

Yes the leaves are curled all the time until they dry and turn brown. Even then they stay on the vine. I have to pull them off to rid the plant of them. I tried pulling off all of the curled leaves one year and watering them with Epson Salts once a week, but that did not touch this problem.

Any other ideas?
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garden5
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What have your temps been like? Is there extreme heat?

Here's one: do you have any of those Chem-lawn or Perfalawn guys come by and spray your yard? If they get careless with the herbicides too close the garden, you can get similar effects.
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gixxerific
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I just read something recently that surprised me.

I can't remember where it was but they were saying that one reason tomato leaves curl is they are making roots and the curl is for something, sorry I can't remember the whole thing. Never heard this before.

I have one tomato plant that has pretty much been curled up for weeks. It keeps growing but stay's curled up. I haven't been giving it much fertilizer and not high nitrogen fertilizer when I do.

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Ozark Lady
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It could be a calcium deficiency.
I know you normally associate BER with calcium deficiency, but it can also effect the leaves.


https://www.brighthub.com/environment/green-living/articles/30601.aspx


I would start misting the plant with dilute milk, on a weekly or more basis, it won't hurt it for sure, and might get rid of the calcium issue, as well as, prevent fungus.
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rainbowgardener
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We have two tomato leaf curl threads going on right now.

Here's the other one:

https://www.helpfulgardener.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=146598#146598

and here's a link I posted in that thread to a wiki article on tomato leaf curl:


https://wiki.answers.com/Q/What_causes_leaf_curl_on_tomato_plants


It is a process of elimination as greener said, to try to figure out which of all the things that could cause leaf curl applies to your situation.
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731greener101
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flushing

I just thought I would update my earlier posting on this thread.The weather finally cooperated and is averaging about six degrees cooler during the day and ten degrees overnight.My tomatoes responded somewhat but after a few days they still were not the picture of health.I noticed my peppers beginning to show signs of iron deficiency so I rechecked my PH level.The last time I tested I only checked nutrient levels.My BAD.My raised bed PH level had climbed to over eight.I am an organic grower so I do not use sulfur in my bed.I flushed the 4x10 bed with 150 gallons of water and the tomato plants and the pepper plants responded within hours.I can only guess that because we have had virtually no rain in almost five weeks and my watering of the bed was minimalist(I have to haul water from a friend down the road as ours is chlorinated city water) this had allowed the PH to rise.It is soooo nice to see the pepper and tomato plants reaching for the sky again.Thanks to all for being part of this forum.Greener

731greener101
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p.s.

The plants look even better today.I think I will wait till it has rained(not likely soon)or till the bed needs watering again and do another flush.Followed soon by another nutrient and PH level test.I have been watering at 50 gallons per week and given the size of the plants and the dry,lack of rain conditions I may increase that amount to 100 gallons per week.Any thoughts people?Greener

garden5
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It sounds like the culprit was the heat and your plants weren't getting watered deep enough.
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731greener101
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Joined: Tue Jul 28, 2009 4:36 pm
Location: West Tennessee Zone 6b

I agree.It seems 50 gallons every 4-6 days was not enough water.I am gonna try 50 gallons every three days for a while and adjust as needed.Greener

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