Question from Christine:
Yesterday I discovered 6 green tomatoes, 2 1/2 “-3 1/2″ diameter, with BER on 2 different plants in different beds. I have been diligent about watering very deeply once a week (only once I watered 2 days early) and fertilizing on a regular schedule and finally put some bagged mulch down about a week ago. I grew them from seed started indoors and they are in raised beds with fresh-this-season soil. I live apx. 5 miles from the ocean in the extreme southern end of Carlsbad. I started using the blossom spray
Answer from Pat:
What is BER? Sorry, but people at my stage in life have to look up on Google to find out this means “Beyond Economical Repair.” This is not a good definition of the problem, but my guess is your tomatoes are suffering from being raised in a raised bed and the soil mix in the raised bed is not yet in good shape. Here is the problem: Current supplies of bagged compost, potting soil and also bagged organic soil amendment or planting mix containing wood products do not contain enough nitrogen. The result is two fold: Water exits raised beds too quickly and also nitrogen is rapidly depleted as wood subtracts nitrogen from soil. The result is that plants such as tomatoes that need constant soil moisture dry out too quickly and suffer the double-whammy of lack of nutrients as well. Do you best this year, add a lot more nitrogen and balanced veggie fertilizer and water more often.
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