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can anyone tell me why cabbages (red and white) and tomatoes planed in pots using multi-purpose compost would turn the leaves white and what i could do to rescue them?

 i thought it may be a nutrient related problem but in brand new compost i'm not sure. it's worse in the cabbages than the tomatoes. the cabbages were bought as seedlings and the tomatoes i grew from seeds. the tomatoes were fine until they went outside. 

also, can anyone point me in the direction of pictures of how to pinch out tomatoes? it always confuses me!

many thanks



  • pr1mr0sepr1mr0se Posts: 1,192

    It sounds like a classic case of cold temperatures.  Cold can cause the leaves to turn white.  It may delay plant growth, but, providing the temperatures pick up and return to normal, it ought not to prevent further development. I presume, of course, that the plants that you bought as well as the ones that you raised from seed, had been hardened off before being planted out.  If not, then the cold would have been the result of temperature shock.

    With regard to "pinching out"tomatoes - it all depends on the type of tomato that you are growing.  Those which are best trained to prevent them from using up their energy in side shoots, should have the shoots that develop where leaves branch from the main stem removed.  Bush varieties can be allowed to develop naturally.  (I find that such tomatoes, Gardeners' Delight, for example, benefit from a bit of training at the outset, so that side shoots are removed, and allowed to develop naturally later;  this makes it easier to ensure that watering reaches the roots and splashing of lower leaves is less likely.  Others may disagree:  gardening is not an exact science!).


  • MizzMizz Posts: 26

    ahah, thanks for your advice. As you say it's not an exact science and i'm learning as i go along with a bit of trial and error. the temp thing makes sense as i planted them out in the hot weather we had before the temps dropped. should i cover them with a closh until it warms up again? not sure if it's better for them to enjoy this rain water or be warm.

    thanks again for your help


  • pr1mr0sepr1mr0se Posts: 1,192

    I'm not sure that I would put them under a cloche now.  Although the temperatures have been pretty low, the wind will strengthen the roots if they aren't staked and the rain will do them good.  They will be checked a little in growth when it is cool, but should pick up pretty quickly in the warm.

    Hope that helps.

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