Ag Answers - In the Garden - 7/31

Published 07/31 2014 08:36AM

Updated 07/31 2014 08:48AM

Sandy Mason --
Good morning I'm Sandy Mason with the U of I Extension.
Now I know July has been a little cool and wetter than normal.
For a lot of us we're loving it because it's a great time to be gardening and for the most part the plants have enjoyed it.
For most of them they're lush and beautiful and doing really well.
But, there are some plants that really like a warmer season, and one of those happens to be tomatoes.
Tomatoes are the number one plant when it comes to vegetable growing -- if people aren't growing anything else -- they're growing tomatoes.
Tomatoes actually ripen faster when it comes to warmer weather. 
So you may notice you have a couple of green tomatoes but they aren't ripening all that fast.
It's really the cool weather.
They will eventually ripen.
Once they start to get a little color to them you can take them indoors and they will go ahead and ripen.
They aren't quite the same flavorfulness we get when we let them vine ripen -- but they will eventually ripen.
So if you're noticing your tomatoes aren't ripening it's the cool weather.
It looks like in August might be a little warmer and I think we'll get some tomatoes.
The other thing you may notice, that's been rampant, is some fungal leaf diseases.
And this is septoria there are a couple of early glide and thacnose -- there's a number of fungal diseases that tomatoes can get.
What you may notice is that it starts at the bottom and works it's way up.
So you'll get these leaves, they turn brown, the first thing you'll notice is spots, and then eventually the leaves will go brown.
Once it gets to a certain point it's really hard to control with fungicides, it really is one of the things where you need to apply fungicides early as a preventative rather than a curative.
One thing you can do is remove these leaves to get them off, so through slashing and things it will work its way up.
You try to get rid of the leaves but then realize there isn't a lot left. It's one of those things, don't be surprised if you get it.
The plants will still produce tomatoes but you may notice sun scald and few other things on it.
It's not a great thing but I will tell you you aren't the only one if you're finding a lot of leaf diseases on your tomatoes this year.
It's just one of those things, the weathers good for some, not for others.
I'm Sandy Mason here with the U of I extension and I'm glad you joined me here in the garden

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