DOLOMITE LIME (FINE) 50 lb Bags
Analysis: 0-0-0. Very fine powder. Use 2 lbs. per 100 sq. ft. For the home gardener and smaller orchard.
All VEGETABLES Garden use rate.
Apply 1 pound per 20-30 square feet on slightly acid sandy soil and incorporate
in top soil.
For clay soils apply 2 pounds per 30 square feet.
Apply Lime 1 week to 4 months before vegetable planting time and incorporate thoroughly in soil. When questionable, determine the acidity of soil before application.
Corrects soil acidity and helps loosen heavy clay soils.
Increases soil pH.
Can be used to keep down odor and flies around stables, outhouses, etc.
Supplies calcium to plants and micro-organisms.
Blossom End Rot
Blossom end rot is a troublesome disease, familiar to most gardeners who have grown tomatoes. The disease is often prevalent in commercial as well as home garden tomatoes, and severe losses may occur if preventive control measures are not undertaken.
Symptoms may occur at any stage in the development of the fruit, but, most commonly, are first seen when the fruit is one-third to one-half full size. As the name of the disease implies, symptoms appear only at the blossom end of the fruit. Initially a small, water-soaked spot appears, which enlarges and darkens rapidly as the fruits develop. The spot may enlarge until it covers as much as onethird to one-half of the entire fruit surface, or the spot may remain small and superficial. Large lesions soon dry out and become flattened, black, and leathery in appearance and texture.
This disease does not spread from plant to plant in the field, nor from fruit to fruit in transit. Since it is of a physiological nature, fungicides and insecticides are useless as control measures. The occurrence of the disease is dependent upon a number of environmental conditions, especially those that affect the supply of water and calcium in the developing fruits. Factors that influence the uptake of water and calcium by the plant have an effect on the incidence and severity of blossom end rot. The disease is especially prevalent when rapidly growing, succulent plants are exposed suddenly to a period of drought. When the roots fail to obtain sufficient water and calcium to be transported up to the rapidly developing fruits, the latter become rotted on their basal ends. Another common predisposing factor is cultivation too close to the plant; this practice destroys valuable roots, which take up water and minerals. Tomatoes planted in cold, heavy soils often have poorly developed root systems. Since they are unable to supply adequate amounts of water and nutrients to plants during times of stress, blossom end rot may result. Soils that contain excessive amounts of soluble salts may predispose tomatoes to the disease, for the availability of calcium to the plants decreases rapidly as total salts in the soil increase.
Control of blossom end rot is dependent upon maintaining adequate supplies of moisture and calcium to the developing fruits. Tomatoes should not be excessively hardened nor too succulent when set in the field. They should be planted in welldrained, adequately aerated soils. Tomatoes planted early in cold soil are likely to develop blossom end rot on the first fruits, with the severity of the disease often subsiding on fruits set later. Thus, planting tomatoes in warmer soils helps to alleviate the problem. Irrigation must be sufficient to maintain a steady even growth rate of the plants. Mulching of the soil is often helpful in maintaining adequate supplies of soil water in times of moisture stress. When cultivation is necessary, it should not be too near the plants nor too deep, so that valuable feeder roots remain uninjured and viable. In home gardens, shading the plants is often helpful when hot, dry winds are blowing, and soil moisture is low. Use of fertilizer low in nitrogen, but high in superphosphate, such as 4-12-4 or 5-20-5, will do much to alleviate the problem of blossom end rot. In emergency situations, foliage can be sprayed with calcium chloride solutions. However, extreme caution must be exercised since calcium chloride can be phytotoxic if applied too frequently or in excessive amounts. Foliar treatment is not a substitute for proper treatment of the soil to maintain adequate supplies of water and calcium.
Blossom-end rot of tomatoes is a physiological disorder caused by a lack of sufficient calcium in the blossom end of the fruit. This disorder results in the decay of tomato fruits on their blossom end. Dry brown or tan areas the size of a dime, that grow to the size of a half dollar, characterize this disorder. This disorder is usually most severe following extremes in soil moisture (either too dry or too wet).
To reduce blossom-end rot in tomato, implement the following steps:
Lime tomato soils to pH 6.5 to 6.7 --
Home gardens not limed in the past 2 to 3 years will need 2 cups of lime for each plant. The lime should be worked into the soil 12 inches deep. To determine the exact amount of lime, send a soil sample to your AG Extention Agronomic Division for analysis and recommendations.
Fertilize properly -- Applying too much fertilizer at one time can result in blossom-end rot. Following soil test recommendations is the best way to insure proper fertilization. For home gardens not soil tested, apply 5 pints of 8-8-8 per 100 ft of row and work it thoroughly into the top 8 inches of soil.
Mulch plants -- Use straw, pine straw, decomposed sawdust, ground decomposed corn cobs, plastic, or newspapers. Mulches conserve moisture and reduce blossom-end rot.
In extreme drought, plastic may increase blossom-end rot if plants are not watered.
Irrigate when necessary -- Tomato plants require about 1.5 inches of water per week during fruiting. This amount of water should be supplied by rain or irrigation. Extreme fluctuations in soil moisture result in a greater incidence of blossom-end rot.
Spray calcium -- The plants may be sprayed with a calcium solution at the rate of 4 lb of calcium nitrate or calcium chloride per 100 gal of water (or 4 level Tbs per gal of water).
This spray should be applied 2 to 3 times a week, beginning at the time the second fruit clusters bloom.
These materials can be mixed with the spray that is used for control of foliar diseases.
Chelated calcium solutions also provide an excellent source of calcium. When using these chelates, follow label directions.
Several foliar spray materials containing calcium are available and all work well for tomatoes.