Early Blight is Killing My Tomatoes

Does this happen to you?  In the middle of the summer do you think “Early blight is killing my tomatoes?”  Do you know what early blight looks like?  Check out this post on tomatoes and early blight for a picture of beginning early blight on the tomato leaves.  It just gets worse from there on in.  The leaves turn completely brown and die.  I have written a few posts on tomatoes and early blight.  I want to encourage you now: not to give up on your tomatoes when they get early blight in the summer time.  Each year I supplement my tomato plants with lots of compost.  They always get some early blight but most of the time the tomato plant does not die.

Don’t Give Up: Early Blight is Killing My Tomatoes

It has taken me a few years to fully realize this.  If you plant your tomatoes with lots of compost, they will re-grow after they are attacked by early blight.  I have never had a tomato plant fully die from early blight.  There is something about our humid hot summers that encourages early blight.  Then towards the end of the summer the tomato plants start to rejuvenate.  Tomatoes are very hardy plants.  If they lay on the ground they will sprout new roots.  Once they start to re-grow they do very well.  In the early fall you will see all kinds of new growth.  The leaves and stems killed by early blight shrivel away and become inconspicuous amidst all the new growth.  And you can get lots of cherry tomatoes right up until the first frost.

early-blight-is-killing-my-tomatoesIt is really amazing how a tomato plant can come back after early blight.  I used to cut off all the leaves that were damaged.  This year I didn’t do that and still the tomatoes came back.  By the end of fall I had so many cherry tomatoes on lush, green, tall plants.  The ones in particular are the plants that my father gave me which I have no name for and this year I planted Amy Apricot Cherry tomatoes and they were prolific!  They are an heirloom and very delicious. Well worth growing!  Above is a picture of the Amy Apricot tomatoes in the fall.  You can see the new green growth.  You can also see the leaves and stems that were killed by early blight all dried up and brown.  It is quite a contrast so don’t give up on your tomatoes in the summer if they are dying.  It is possible that they will rejuvenate for the fall.