Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Disaster strikes Hausfrau's garden!

Diagnoses and organic advice welcome!

I went out to water the tomatoes this morning and found, sadly, that 3 of my tomatoes have been infested with SOMETHING that is turning the leaves yellow, curled, and with small holes. It appears to be spreading from the base of the plant. The tomato fruits seem to be unharmed. I didn't see any actual buggies (like hornworms), but there did appear to be a little "webbing" on the leaves. Most of the plant still looks green and healthy, but a good 1/4 of it is hideous!

Is this just aphids or what? I went and sprayed with an oil/detergent mix, and then I fertilized. Other advice??

Also, I have noticed that although my pumpkin plants are HUGE, the fruits set, but then they seem to wither. What is wrong? Can I fix this??


Lewru said...

It sounds like spider mites. But you might check info on fusarium/verticillium wilts, too, as they yellows leaves and spread from the base (I think!). I would spray every morning, let it sit, and then rinse 1/2 hr later. Remove severely infected branches with scissors. Don't compost - throw away. You might check the tomato forum on Garden Web (this is the link for the OK forum:

You might need to hand fertilize your pumpkins. Take a male flower (no swollen base), pull off or pull back the petals to reveal his, um, the, um, stamen. Take the stamen and stick it in a female flower (this sound familiar?). Rub it around good. Should do the trick.

I know some conditions cause a lack of fertilization, but I can't pull anything off the top of my head right now...loads of info on the interwebs, though.

No worries! It'll be okay!

Hausfrau said...

I think you are right about spider mites. I will prune tonight!

anajz said...

Frau, I went out tonight and found some brown cumply leaves on the base of over 1/2 of my container tomatoes. I am also seeing the same that you are with your pumpkins...except on my squash and zuchinni.
Par for my day today!
Still need to take some photos of my spotted cukes for Lewru to analyze. :)

Verde said...

I'm here to commiserate (and maybe learn some biology - no?). I good while everything in the garden is going well.

Hausfrau said...

I know, lewru comes in handy doesn't she?

Danielle said...

I'd concur with lewru on the pollination pumpkin issue.

If the issue with the tomatoes is blight (which will happen from the base up) removing the infected leaves can slow down the problem, drip water to avoid any kind of soil splash will help minimize it too, and you could try Serenade, which is an organic fungicide that can also help keep the disease at bay.

Enjoying your blog, btw.