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Tomato blight or some other nasty? It was all going so well :(

Hi all

I've been babying and looking after my tomatoes since I first posted back in April.  I've really been enjoying it and have a tonne of green tomatoes.  The first ones are starting to turn now and I've been looking forward to the fruits of my labour.  

A week or so ago I noticed some discoloured leaves and a lot of leaves were curling:




I was going to post then, but the leaf problem I've had before (and read a fair bit about) and assumed was nothing to worry about.  The leaf discolouration was only on a few of my 25 odd plants, and even on those it was just a few of the bottom leaves.  

Today, I fear things may have taken a more sinister turn :(




I've never experienced blight, but I fear that might be what’s up.  Only a couple of toms are affected, but a lot of leaves are.  Can anyone please confirm if it is blight and if not what it might be.  Are they doomed or can anything be done?

Many thanks for any help and for all of the help along my tomato journey.





  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 16,526

    I think that is blight. Try taking off all affected leaves. Disinfect the knife between plants with meths.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 82,737

    Sadly that is blight ... bad luck image

    Do as Fidget suggests.

    Mine were similar a couple of years ago ... lost almost all of them ... all except Crimson Crush which are Blight Resistant.  Although they were grown alongside the others they didn't get the blight and fruited well.  Not the best flavour in the world, but good enough and far better than no tomatoes at all.  

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • Am I allowed to swear on this forum???  

    Ah well, never mind.  I'll get to work in a mo.  

    The badly affected plants...  Should I uproot them completely?  I remember many years ago my partner knew a chap who used to snip ALL the leaves off his tom plants at some stage in the summer (cannot remember when exactly).  So perhaps I should do that to the badly affected plants rather then get rid completely???  

    As a quick aside - is it ok to use meths for all disinfecting purposes?  Can I use it on secateurs when pruning fruit trees?  I was going to buy some alcohol for future reference, but meths I already have a fair bit of and will use that for sterilising purposes if it is suitable.  

    Although saying that I might get the alcohol anyway to drown my blight sorrows :(

    Thanks for the super swift replies.

    Last edited: 02 August 2017 15:17:14

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 82,737

    Have a look at the stems ... if there are black blotches pull the plants up and bag and bin them.  

    If the stems are clear you can try removing all affected leaves ... check twice a day and snip any affected leaflets off.  

    Good luck.  

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 9,965

    So sorry to see your post Max - and it was all going so well.
    Nothing we can do about the weather though. I've had 3 alerts from Blightwatch in the last couple of weeks for my area. 
    You're fine using meths on the secateurs and can use them on other stuff afterwards, just give them a good rub over with  meths when you've finished with the toms.
    I used to grow them outside and remove any leaves that touch the ground soon as I planted them, then would start removing the lower leaves around now. 
    I've lost the lot through blight sometimes when grow outside in earlier years - it's just bad luck Max.
    If you have to grow outside again, there are supposedly blight resistant tomato seed available

    Last edited: 02 August 2017 15:42:31

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • Thanks again for the help and replies.  I'll get right to it with the blight. Someone has said that the first photos show a magnesium deficiency.  Should I remove the leaves that show signs of that as well?

    With regard the meths, should I use it between each cut, or between each plant, or ??? 


  • Allotment BoyAllotment Boy Posts: 5,979

    Max3- Meths is Ethyl Alcohol just blended with some Methyl Alcohol to stop it being drinkable & therefore not liable to the same tax levels (methyl Alcohol is poisonous). Ideally wipe between each cut if you can but certainly after each plant. Oh & wear nitrile  gloves!!

    Good luck your saving your Toms 

    AB Still learning

  • Thanks Iain.  

    OK, so I've removed all affected leaves and will keep a very keen eye on them.  The ones in the bed (x11) were by far the worse, and some of the plants have literally zero leaves left.  Is it worth even leaving them in the bed like that?  The main stem looks ok and has no black blotches, and the green toms look fine too.  

    I have another lot in pots (x14 or so) and I'm not sure if they have blight or not.  Perhaps the odd leaf here and there but on the whole they look ok, and I can't be sure if the leaves that weren't perfect were blight ridden or just a bit brown and "off".  I'm guessing it is likely just a matter of time though...  We'll see.  

    With regards what to do with the green toms, it says in an article I've just read:  "Wait for five days after picking unripe fruit to see if blackening develops on fruit from untreated or infected plants."  Is that the case?  And with the plants that have no leaves left, should I remove all of the green toms or is there a small chance they can still ripen?  Sorry if that's a silly question, my biology ain't all that!!!  



  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 16,526

    If you remove all the affected leaves, leaving just a stem and tomatoes hanging, you have half a chance of them ripening. Sterilise (wipe with alcohol) the knife or secateurs between each plant.

  • Hi

    Back again...

    We're growing some spuds in sacks.  I thought the foliage was just dying back normally as potatoes do, but now with all this talk of blight I'm wondering if I've been mistaken and they have it too...  Could anyone take a look at the photos please and see if it is possible to tell?



    Many thanks


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