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Tomato young start wilting from the center

Posted by salerna 4 (My Page) on
Tue, Mar 19, 13 at 18:44

Hi all,

First, thanks so much for all the excellent information here.

It's my first year starting indoors from seed. I've generally had good success with germination and last week I potted up my black cherry tomato youngster. It's in a loamy organic soil pot--5"X4". Since yesterday, I noticed the bigger leaves curling and today the center, tender leaves are drooping along with the entire plant. I was watering all my young transplants frequently for several days and then I cut back. But the soil in this pot has remained quite moist. I'm experimenting and using 2 different potting mixes to see which gives better results. Here is a pic. Thanks so much in advance for your advise.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Tomato young start wilting from the center

it may just be transplant shock in which case it should perk up within 24-48 hours.

But I am concerned about how you describe your watering. Over-watering, overly wet soil, kills more seedlings than anything else. People forget that the root, which can easily rot in too wet soil, need air/O2 even more than they need water. So if this one doesn't perk up I'd be willing to bet you are keeping it far to wet and the roots for that new growth are rotting.

Try cutting back on your watering by at least half. Do NOT use the surface soil condition as an indication for the need to water. Give the roots a chance to breathe too and see if it doesn't perk back up.

Dave


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RE: Tomato young start wilting from the center

Judging by the blackness of the soil and your description of watering I'd say you overwatered. Transplanted seedlings need no more water than at any other time. If you make sure your soil is moist right through before transplanting then they shouldn't need watering again until the soil is dry. Stick your finger in the soil and if it feels wet don't water.

More seedlings are lost to overwatering than any other cause. I'd get a fan on that seedling and try to dry out the soil


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RE: Tomato young start wilting from the center

Dave and dowlinggram, thanks so very much for your responses.

I did some more research and think you're absolutely right about my overwatering.

I did not know that the soil can be allowed to get dry with transplants. I thought that they needed daily watering for several days for their root systems....This is so helpful!

I will also get a fan---thanks so much for these tips. In the meanwhile, I'm really enjoying this whole process even though my learning curve is quite steep.

Take care and I look forward to learning from you as the season progresses.

Elisabeth


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RE: Tomato young start wilting from the center

Dave and dowlinggram, thanks so very much for your responses.

I did some more research and think you're absolutely right about my overwatering.

I did not know that the soil can be allowed to get dry with transplants. I thought that they needed daily watering for several days for their root systems....This is so helpful!

I will also get a fan---thanks so much for these tips. In the meanwhile, I'm really enjoying this whole process even though my learning curve is quite steep.

Take care and I look forward to learning from you as the season progresses.

Elisabeth


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