I noticed at the weekend that the tomatoes out in the garden along the wall were looking very sick, the fruits were splitting and going mouldy, with a funny look about the tops of them, and the leaves were going black and dying, and the stems also had black marks on them. Today I finally got round to reading the Garden Organic August Newsletter, and they warned of tomato and potato blight being rife in this warm wet weather.
I looked up their fact sheet, and that’s exactly my problem. There’s no real solution once it’s got hold, although Bordeaux Mixture is an acceptable organic spray to prevent spread. I’m just going to hope for the best for the patio tomatoes. I took off all the leaves that were discoloured (and I think it has already got to the Black Russian a little, but hopefully the remaining fruits will ripen before it takes hold) and put them in a sack to take to the tip. Then this evening I pulled out all the affected plants and tried to pick up all the tomaotes that were dropping too. I’ll have another search for them tomorrow. You can compost the leaves and plants ok in a home compost heap, but the blight stays in the tomato seeds and isn’t destroyed by home composting, although it is in a commercial setup with higher temperatures, so they can go to the greenwaste centre.
I sorted out all the harvested tomatoes so far, and sorted them into dubious and ok. The ok ones went to make tomato sauce for the freezer today, and the others went into a pasta sauce for today and tomorrow. But I think I’m going to be woefully short of tomatoes this year, despite my best efforts.