Yet another early blight question.


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After the last couple of rainy years you'd think I would have a pHD in blight but apparently not!

So rather than fight it, I decided to plant the bulk of the veggie garden at a friend/neighbor's house a block away. She has more sun, similarly great soil, so we are partnering up.

So...everything is growing fantastically well and we have about 15 tomato plants of different varieties going along with squash, carrots, peppers etc. Except one tomato plant -just one - is clearly affected by early blight. It's a Brandywine. To the left and right of it are different tomatoes and they are utterly fine (so far) as is everything else. Pretty heavily mulched with woodchips and straw and watered correctly.

Is it possible the fungus got carried in with the plant (from a very good nursery, not a big box store.) Or should we expect it to start spreading in her garden too?

I just find it weird that only one plant is affected. There is not a single iota of yellow on anything else there.

20160710_162402.jpg
 
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Early blight is a soil born fungus and is easily wind born as well. The Brandywine varieties are one of my favorites but I gave up trying to grow them because they are more susceptible to EB than other large varieties. Also I gave up on them because of my climate here, it get too hot too soon.
I did an experiment this year on early blight and it worked out better than I had expected. Always before I would use liquid seaweed, compost tea and a cornmeal spray on my tomatoes starting the spraying before the blooms opened. I could usually control EB long enough to harvest a full crop but EB invariably killed the plants. This time I didn't spray anything. I bought a 50lb bag of horticultural cornmeal and kept the lower leaves and all around the base of the plants dusted with it. I still had a little EB on some plants but nothing major. I ended up with a full harvest and no dead plants because of EB. In fact most of my tomatoes showed no sign at all. Here where I live was a perfect year for EB. Heavy rain, light rain, even a flood and hot sunshine in between.
 
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Ugh thanks Chuck. I remember asking about EB last year and you recommending the cornmeal but I never followed up on that because it was late in the season. Tractor Supply will have it right? There is one a couple of miles from me.

Yeah I figured it was because Brandywines were a more vulnerable heirloom; mind you most of our tomatoes are but that one is clearly vulnerable.
 
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It is much easier to prevent blight than to get rid of blight. Spray rusty water on your tomatoes with a small amount of dish soap in the water. Put pellet lime and wood ash in the soil to prevent blight. I have never been able to stop blight once my tomato plant have it but I have been able to slow it down for a month or so. It is not to late to start new plants from seeds I start 1 or 2 new plants every week until Aug 15. Squeeze seeds from a tomato into a bucket of water to wash off the enzymes that prevent seeds from growing sprinkle 10 seeds per spot stir them around keep them moist plants will be up in a week. Put plenty of lime or wood ash in the soil you wont have blight. Burn some metal in a fire, nail, wire, kitchen food cans, put them in a bucket of water you will have rust water in a few days.
 
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Ugh thanks Chuck. I remember asking about EB last year and you recommending the cornmeal but I never followed up on that because it was late in the season. Tractor Supply will have it right? There is one a couple of miles from me.

Yeah I figured it was because Brandywines were a more vulnerable heirloom; mind you most of our tomatoes are but that one is clearly vulnerable.
I don't have a Tractor Supply. I got mine at a feed store. It costs $12
It is much easier to prevent blight than to get rid of blight. Spray rusty water on your tomatoes with a small amount of dish soap in the water. Put pellet lime and wood ash in the soil to prevent blight. I have never been able to stop blight once my tomato plant have it but I have been able to slow it down for a month or so. It is not to late to start new plants from seeds I start 1 or 2 new plants every week until Aug 15. Squeeze seeds from a tomato into a bucket of water to wash off the enzymes that prevent seeds from growing sprinkle 10 seeds per spot stir them around keep them moist plants will be up in a week. Put plenty of lime or wood ash in the soil you wont have blight. Burn some metal in a fire, nail, wire, kitchen food cans, put them in a bucket of water you will have rust water in a few days.
Where are you located? Some of the things you say make sence
 
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@gary350, you got me intrigued! I am going to research this rust water idea; I've never heard of it.

@Chuck, Tractor Supply is I guess a Midwestern chain store. General feed and farm supplies. I've been working absolutely insane hours but I checked and they do have horticultural cornmeal and if I have time tomorrow I'm picking some up.

In the meantime I like the idea of burning rusty metal things in my fire pit. :D
 
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Can you get Bordeaux mixture in the States? I swear by it to protect against blight.
 
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I had to look up Bordeaux mixture...similar to an organic fungicide spray I bought a couple of years ago (and similar I guess to gary's suggestion.)
However, from what I understand it is a preventative and not that effective once the blight is established. And there are some risks, both healthwise and to the soil over time.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bordeaux_mixture
 

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In the UK we can sign up to the Blightwatch service, we get a text/email when the conditions are right for blight in our area. Which means we only spray when it's necessary.

I always wash sprayed tomatoes thoroughly to get the spray off before eating.

It does hold it back a little once it's taken hold, sometimes just enough to get a crop.

It was discovered by accident by a grape farmer in the Bordeaux area, he was fed up of folk pinching the grapes from his vines that bordered the road, so he mixed a few things from his shed to spray on the grapes to make them taste bad.

He later noticed that the vines he'd sprayed didn't get mildew like the other vines did :)
 
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Interesting, thanks zigs. :)

So far it's just that one plant still. I'm going to try the cornmeal because it's cheap and easy. For next year will definitely take more preventative measures!
 
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In the UK we can sign up to the Blightwatch service, we get a text/email when the conditions are right for blight in our area. Which means we only spray when it's necessary.

I always wash sprayed tomatoes thoroughly to get the spray off before eating.

It does hold it back a little once it's taken hold, sometimes just enough to get a crop.

It was discovered by accident by a grape farmer in the Bordeaux area, he was fed up of folk pinching the grapes from his vines that bordered the road, so he mixed a few things from his shed to spray on the grapes to make them taste bad.

He later noticed that the vines he'd sprayed didn't get mildew like the other vines did :)
Does this seem about right
http://www.gardeningknowhow.com/garden-how-to/info/diy-bordeaux-fungicide.htm

Next year I'll do a side by side comparison
 
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and a cornmeal spray on my tomatoes

Cornmeal spray? Do tell us more - again, it's probably come up in the past but...

I am also one of those people who has procrastinated about cornmeal in the garden.

Pretty heavily mulched with woodchips and straw and watered correctly.

I have been thinking about mulching my tomatoes more. I recently started putting down a layer of compost (purchased) and now I am thinking of using coir. I have been able to overwinter my tomatoes and keep them going as perennial vines. Of course now it's July...
 

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Does this seem about right
http://www.gardeningknowhow.com/garden-how-to/info/diy-bordeaux-fungicide.htm

Next year I'll do a side by side comparison

Yep, but i'd use calcium hydroxide and not calcium oxide unless you've got experience of the stuff.

I slake lime as part of my job and when I do, I put gloves and eye protection on, pour water on the calcium oxide and then run round a corner, it goes from cold to boiling in a couple of seconds and if you don't add enough water it forms a boiling, spitting gell that will burn your skin off if it touches you :eek:

Know of 2 people that have been blinded by it.
 
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Yep, but i'd use calcium hydroxide and not calcium oxide unless you've got experience of the stuff.

I slake lime as part of my job and when I do, I put gloves and eye protection on, pour water on the calcium oxide and then run round a corner, it goes from cold to boiling in a couple of seconds and if you don't add enough water it forms a boiling, spitting gell that will burn your skin off if it touches you :eek:

Know of 2 people that have been blinded by it.
Thanks for the advise. I would rather have early blight than use calcium oxide I am quite sure
 
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Cornmeal spray? Do tell us more - again, it's probably come up in the past but...

I am also one of those people who has procrastinated about cornmeal in the garden.



I have been thinking about mulching my tomatoes more. I recently started putting down a layer of compost (purchased) and now I am thinking of using coir. I have been able to overwinter my tomatoes and keep them going as perennial vines. Of course now it's July...
Cornmeal spray is used by many as a preventative to black spot on roses and on other fungi such as the one which causes early blight. Horticultural cornmeal is used as a growing medium for the fungus tricoderma. Tricoderma is a beneficial fungus which attacks and kills harmful fungi which causes black spot and early blight. When sprayed on a plant tricoderma will grow (hopefully) microscopically on the leaf surfaces. It is made by putting a cup or two of the cornmeal into a sock or pantyhose and soaking it about 24 hours in water. You then squeeze the water out of the sock, put the cornmeal into your compost pile and strain the cornmeal water through layers of cheese cloth or other fine meshed things to remove any particles that might clog up your sprayer. I like to mix it with compost tea and liquid seaweed.
 

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