Location: Hot and Humid, Home of the Field Artilery, Ft. Sill, Oklahoma
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Some speaker at church said that he put a spoon full of epsom salt his tomato plants and they grew really tall and it also worked as a natural pesticide and added some mineral, magnesium? I can't remember.
Does anyone know anything about this? I have some nice tomato plants growing in pots and I don't want to kill them by putting salt on them, but I do want to help them if I can.
I do this all of the time. I add 1 Tbl. of epsom salts when I transplant tomatoes.
Last year I didn't have epsom salts, so I just planted them anyway. The suffered from wilt and didn't do as well. And wilt is definately worse when you have a humid climate. So I stocked up on epsom salts for this year.
But don't put the salt on them, put it at the roots when you transplant. Dig a hole, put in the salt, then put in the roots.
Thanks for describing *wilt* and no problem about the delay. Hope you had a blast ! Camping out can be so much fun. And relaxing. It certainly can be nice to get away where it doesn't involve a mall and lots of hustle-bustle, lol. Our tomatoes two years ago had developed dark blotches and their growth was kinda stunted. I was told they had blight and not to plant any the following year cause *it* was in the soil (?) I never did look up information concerning this. I'm just starting out learning about gardening and I could have received some (or a lot, lol) of misinformation.
well, actually, wilts and blights are different problems tomato plants can get. here's a link with pictures of the various ones -- http://vegetablemdonline.ppath.corne...omato_List.htm . different diseases are more common in some parts of the country than others. what kind of tomatoes were you growing last year? most of the hybrids now are bred to be resistant to a lot of diseases, but heirlooms can be more susceptible. that's not bad advice to rotate your crops and plant something different where you planted your tomatoes last year and plant tomatoes in a different spot.
were the dark spots last year on your tomatoes or your tomato plants? if they were just on your tomatoes that sounds like it might've been blossom end rot. i've read that can be caused by a calcium deficieny in the soil. not sure on that, though. in my experience the times i've grown romas the first ones seem to get it, but later ones on the same vines don't necessarily. www.gardensalive.com has some organic soil ammendments for preventing blossom end rot. not sure about the blight, though.
haven't heard of the epsom salt trick, but a little bit of good compost is supposed to solve all gardening woes. you might try that!
hth and happy gardening!
Mama to two girl beans, Feb 2001 and Nov 2003 . DH , and two crazy . Running on biodiesel since 2004! "All you fascists are bound to lose" — Woody Guthrie
I went and looked up the epsom salt thing in Rodales Encyclopedia of organic gardening. Here is what it says,
"Make the planting holes larger than normal for each seedling; cover the bottom of the hole with several inches of sifted compost mixed with a handful of bonemeal. For magnesium, which promotes plant vitality and productivity, sprinkle 1 teaspoon of Epsom salts into each hole."
Wow, glad I reread that- I will be putting my tomatoes out this weekend...
I've never done the bonemeal part though- just the compost and epsom salts.
Last Minute- we had so much fun. It was my husbands birthday and we used to backpack every year for it, but who wants to lug a three year old and all of your gear! We stayed in a shelter in the mountains of Vermont and I wish we were still there!
I had been trying to grow romas and I think the others were beefsteak.
I think it's time to begin a gardening journal as now I can't quite remember if the blotches were on the tomatoes alone or also situated on the plants themselves. I do know they were not edible looking.
The calcium deficiency sounds about right though. We have a wood stove and had been dumping the ashes in the garden throughout the winter. I have stopped this as I've heard/read that this can imbalance the ph of the soil. I think calcium content is part of the balancing act.
I've been thinking about composting for my plants (used to have an indoor apartment compost with red african dung worms) but have yet to set up a system for this.
And thanks for the *off-topic* comment. I immediately got a blast of fresh mountain air. Ahhhh ..... I can almost picture it.