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Week of July 1, 2021

If you see black or rotting bottoms on your tomatoes, peppers or eggplants (less common), it is most likely blossom end rot. Tomato varieties that set all of its fruit at once (determinate) are commonly affected; cherry tomatoes rarely get blossom end rot. It is caused by a calcium deficiency in your plants caused by soil deficiencies or from uneven watering (calcium is not taken up). To help prevent this, mulch around your plants to help conserve soil moisture, keep your plants evenly watered, and make sure your soil has sufficient amounts of calcium. Apply a soluble form of calcium for quick release to your plants. If your soil has sufficient calcium, then no supplement is needed. Don’t over fertilize your plants with high nitrogen either. Excessive nitrogen will lead to more foliage which will reduce the amount of calcium available to the fruit. Remove the damaged fruit.