Tiny white dots on tomato leaves?

doomahxAugust 16, 2012


I purchased a tomato plant from a gardening store some time in june and it's been doing well so far aside from some light leaf curling here and there. It was sold as a grape tomato plant but the fruit has gotten way too big for any grape tomato I have seen.

I woke up the other morning and noticed that some of the leaves were starting to yellow and turn brown, i looked closer and noticed tiny white spots on a bunch of them. It almost looks like someone used some spray paint on them. I wake up this morning and noticed more leave starting to turn brown so now I am getting a bit worried.

Does anyone have any idea what this could be? I would hate to lose these tomatoes!

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another photo.

Forgot to mention, they are in fafard professional potting mix within what I believe is a 4 or 5 gallon pot. I stick a wooden skewer in daily to check the moisture and wind up watering almost every day, this thing is thirsty.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2012 at 9:28PM
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Is this tomato growing on a balcony? The tiny white dots look like a mite maybe. I would get a hand lens and start looking very closely at things. Is there webbing on the underside of the leaves? If so, then you will have to find a miticide that is rated okay for tomatoes, and/or continually wash off the leaves, undersides too. Maybe you will have to water twice a day. Mites like it to be dry, and attack dry plants. If you have to wash off the leaves, then try to do it in the morning, so the leaves can dry off before it gets cool, Otherwise you can encourage early blight that way.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2012 at 7:16PM
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edweather(Zone 5a/b Central NY)

Hard to keep all tomato plants looking good the whole season. Something always seems to get one or two of mine. I noticed that there are some yellowing leaves in the background. If it were my plant, I would remove most if not all of the affected foliage and spray with a, fungicide.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2012 at 9:18PM
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mea2214(z5 Chicago)

It looks like mites. I just discovered mites killing mine this year and my leaves looked like that. I bought an organic spray but my plants, like yours, are too big now. I'll use the spray next year when the plants are small. I've been successful with simple hard cold water showers with a hose and mercilessly pruning anything infected. Clip any branch that has curled leaves. Check the backside of a fresh green set of curled leaves and look very closely. The way your tomoatoes look in those pictures they should be crawling all over and fast. I can see them with my naked eyes but some people need a magnifying glass. It took me three weeks of heavy pruning and water showers and I kind of have them under control but not completely. I still check every single day and find them albeit far slower and in far less quantities. Sometimes I'd prune a branch and a big spider would jump out at me. The link below shows my despair last year at this date when all my tomatoes were in a death spiral because of mites (but I didn't figure this out until July 2012).

Here is a link that might be useful: Last year's tomato failure

    Bookmark   August 19, 2012 at 3:51AM
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I looked very closely and i can't see anything moving at all. I read that neem oil can be used to control spider mites, i have some left so I will give that a try and report back in a few days.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2012 at 9:08AM
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