Tomatoes-curled leaves

Discussion in 'Fruit and Vegetable Gardening' started by Diana, Jul 1, 2005.

  1. Diana

    Diana Member

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    Location:
    Galiano Island BC
    Local Time:
    4:46 AM
    I have tomatoes planted in a raised bed. We used a mix of fish compost and topsoil. The plant stems were buried with all but top leaves removed. In the bottom of each planting hole I put shredded newspaper which had been soaked in seaweed fertilizer. they have been kept well watered, and have fertilised alternately with 'tomato food' and seaweed fertilizer. the plants are sturdy and healthy looking with lots of foliage.
    Problem-last week or so-some leaves have started curling lengthwise. There is no sign of bug damage. I planted two types of tomato-determinate and indeterminate. Only the shorter type have the curled leaves. The other taller bushier type are okay.
    I am not sure which one is determinate-maybe the smaller ones? All the plants are enclosed in cages.
    Why are the leaves curling? I have checked my garden books, and the only explanation is a possible virus. Any ideas, suggestions are welcome. By the way I am on the Southern Gulf Islands.
     
  2. j.imrie

    j.imrie Member

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    Location:
    Mayne Island, B.C.
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    I don't have any answers for you, but we are seeing the same problem here on Mayne. My plants are stunted, the leaves are curled lengthwise like yours, and the colour has gone dark blue with some yellow. I know a couple of others with the same problem.

    Hope someone can come up with advice.

    Janette.
     
  3. allison

    allison Member

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    Location:
    Victoria BC
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    Hi there,

    I'm having the same problem with my tomatoes. I first noticed that all but one plant had stopped growing, and in addition to the leaves curling, the leaves were turning bright yellow with purple veins. The affected plants were also very rigid and upright. Now it has spread to the remaining plant and my green peppers, which are in the greenhouse with the tomatoes.

    From searching around on the Internet, I thought that maybe it was "curly top" virus. If that is the case, what can be done about it? Do I need to sterilze the pots and the greenhouse so that it doesn't return next year?

    Allison
     
  4. Ralph Walton

    Ralph Walton Active Member 10 Years

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    Location:
    Denman Island,BC
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    The vestor for Beet curly top curtovirus is the beet leafhopper. The plants will not recover and should be removed ASAP to prevent or limit spread. The list of affected plants is huge and includes tomato and pepper plants. Sterilization of pots and other surfaces (while it may be a good idea for other afflictions) isn't going to have much effect. I believe there are egg parasites available, but you'd have to look for them.
    Ralph
     
  5. allison

    allison Member

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    Location:
    Victoria BC
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    Ralph,

    Thank you for the information. Do you know if this is rampant on the coast this year? I've never had the problem before, and I notice that the other posts on this topic are from gardeners on the gulf islands. If they have cycles like caterpillars, maybe next year the beet leafhopper won't be a problem? I hope....

    Allison
     
  6. mr.shep

    mr.shep Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    Location:
    San Joaquin Valley, California
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    I think a few photos of the leaf symptoms
    would help. Here are two links that can be
    used to possibly track down the problem.

    http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/tomatoproblemsolver/index.html

    http://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/selectnewpest.tomatoes.html

    From where I sit with no photos to work with
    I am not so sure the problem is not attributed
    to a severe nutrient deficiency. Tomatoes
    require lots of potassium. Cool weather and
    acid soil growing mediums will really slow
    down potassium uptake by the roots. Around
    here if the leaves show any blue to violet to
    purple coloring it usually meant a potassium
    deficiency, although a Nitrogen deficiency in
    cool climates can also give the leaves a violet
    colored hue.

    Were any of these VFNT Tomatoes? Tomatoes
    that are resistant to verticillium wilt, fusarium
    wilt, nematodes and tobacco mosaic virus.

    Jim
     
  7. Ralph Walton

    Ralph Walton Active Member 10 Years

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    Location:
    Denman Island,BC
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    Deficiencies are a definite possibility this year, even with fertilizers. Nitrogen in particular is easy to wash out and Lord knows we've had a lot of washing this spring and (alleged) summer. I did my usual field fertilizing this spring, but the areas subject to run off are easily visible (not as deep green and shorter).
    Ralph
     
  8. jhhspark3

    jhhspark3 Member

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    Location:
    Jackson Hts., NY
    Local Time:
    7:46 AM
    I live in Queens, NYC. I have for the last 3 years planted tomatos in "earthboxes" and other such containers. The plants have grown well and I have gotten a good crop of tomatos to begin with. However, each year the leaves curl, turn yellow and then the fuit seems the stop producing. I found on your Web page the explanation of this condition, which you say is caused by Bemisia whiteflies. I have never seen them in this area, but that doesn't mean they don't exist. Is there anything I can do to get rid of them this year? Do you want any further information from me? Thanks
     
  9. Acoma

    Acoma Active Member

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    Location:
    Reno, Nevada Zone 6A
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    My 2 cents. I had a long cool spring with a now hot summer. With this being my experimental large scale year, I tried pots for the tomato plants. I noticed yellowing and curling of the plants with no real growth when there should have been. I decided to take them from the pots to the raised bed. I found that the plants had poor drainage in the pots. I removed much of the lowere leaves, and planted 70% of the plants in the raised bed. It appears that the culprit was the drowning of the roots, even with every other week of fertilizing. I now switched to 1-week fertilizing, with daily moisturizing of the soil in the raised bed. Results after 2 weeks. Major turnaround. Beautiful green leaves, and new growth.

    Reason for the story. Maybe you think you are just watering, but is drainage correct? Are you fertilizing 1-week? They are as needy as corn for nutrients. Take one of the plants out carefully to see how the roots are doing. Maybe dig down a foot next to the plant to see if soil is consistantly moist, or if it is moist then soaked. This makes such a huge difference as well to strength of plant and root system.. Then, make sure you are feeding them 1-week with nutrients.
     

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