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Tomato leaves In Compost?

Posted by joytwo1839 z6 TN (My Page) on
Fri, Jul 18, 08 at 14:25

I keep cutting my tomato leaves back when they turn
brown or yellow. I THOUGHT I would make a pile in the garden and then late in the fall plow them in. Would
this be okay or do you think they might have a fungus.
Would the winter kill it if so?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Tomato leaves In Compost?

if it is blight then you need to throw them away, as it will live inthe soil. if they are jsut dying off due to overwatering, then they should be ok.

my entire garden gets turned over back in the soil eveyr spring.

RE: Tomato leaves In Compost?

Old school thought was that all the waste material frrm your garden needed to be thrown away because of the potential of plant diseases, but there is a whole body of research out there that says even if your vegetative waste did have a plant disease composting that, or even putting it right back into the garden where it grew, will aid the soil bacteria in developing immunities to that disease so it will, eventually not be a problem.
For many years all of the vegetative waste from my planting beds has either been composted or recycled right in place (and the older I get the more likely it will be left in place) and I have no plant diseases that need serious concern. My tomatoes have been grown in the same spot for 25 years now and do very well with the addition each year of more compost and mulch. Others around here have tomaotes, growing in soils with little organic matter, that get about every disease tomatoes can adn those people cannot figure out why because all the waste from their gardens is gotten rid of and they "rotate" each year.

RE: Tomato leaves In Compost?

Last year I had fusilum wilt on 6 tomato plants, my worst tomato crop ever (no worthwhile tomato's) when the fall came, into the compost they went, this year I planted my tomatoes in the exact same spot, I used the compost I had made from last years tomatoes (and 8 bales of straw, the grass clippings I got from cutting my mother in laws grass and what ever else I could grab that didn't squeak) and as of 7/19/08- 9:20 am, my tomatoes are huge, lush,and lovely.
if you get your compost hot and keep it hot, you should have nice safe compost.


RE: Tomato leaves In Compost?

I agree. Even tho this is an oft debated question it is "old school" that possibly diseased plant material can't go into compost. There is simply too much research that proves that composting even frankly diseased material resolves the problem.

Here, everything from the garden goes into the compost piles at end of season. We don't till it back in only because we plant winter cover crops in the gardens and it's easier to plant without all the fall cleanings composting in place.

Plus Early Blight is caused by a fungus that can also be air borne so composting infected plants isn't going to reduce the chances of exposure to that fungus but can increase the plants resistance to the fungus.


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