k3c3t3
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Joined: Mon May 02, 2016 9:16 pm

Trail Marks on Tomato Leaves

Good evening. I am a novice gardener and this is my very first post on this website. I am growing two types of tomato plants (grape and vine ripe) and a a cucumber plant. The only preventative I use is a blight/insect repellant which has water, baking soda, vegetable oil and dish soap. It seems like it has been doing a great job of keeping blight away as well as most pests. I just can't get a handle on the trail/swirl marks on the leaves. Does anyone have information on this? I would attach a pic for you all to see, but they are too large in size. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
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Last edited by k3c3t3 on Mon May 02, 2016 10:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Lindsaylew82
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Location: Upstate, SC

Re: Trail Marks on Tomato Leaves

I have the same issue with pics from my phone...

I have to upload to photobucket. Then upload to the site from photobucket.

Sounds like leaf miners, off the top of my head.
Lindsay
Upstate, SC
USDA Zone 7b/ Sunset Zone 31

k3c3t3
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Re: Trail Marks on Tomato Leaves

Thanks so much! I was able to upload the photos.

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applestar
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Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Re: Trail Marks on Tomato Leaves

Yep leaf miners. There are two kinds that infest tomato leaves -- tomato leaf miner moth caterpillars and (I believe) Pepper leaf miner fly maggots.

The winding trail type is the work of the fly maggots and they are more prevalent in the hotter regions as far as I know -- at least I don't get them here, though I do get the moth -- though you didn't say where you are.

If you look closely, there should be a bump at the end of the trail where the culprit is hiding. You can squish them, cut them out, or remove the entire leaf. (removing the entire leaf or trail marked portion of the leaves make it easier to spot new infestations). Be sure to completely dispose of them -- sealed in plastic bags, burned, etc.
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k3c3t3
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Re: Trail Marks on Tomato Leaves

I'm from north Florida. Thank you so much for the info. Can they harm the plants or are they harmless?

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Lindsaylew82
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Re: Trail Marks on Tomato Leaves

They won't kill the plant, but they will reduce its hardiness. Makes them more prone to fungal and bacterial diseases later. I don't believe they like neem oil, so maybe you could replace the vegetable oil with neem in your recipe. You could add some tiny flowering plants like dill and cilantro, lettuce, all after they grow tall and flower, they seem to bring in the most beneficial insects (the enemy of your pest).

Just remove the leaves or mash them between your fingers. That kills the little nasties in the mean time.
Lindsay
Upstate, SC
USDA Zone 7b/ Sunset Zone 31

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