[NAFEX] tomato blight

Lee Reich lreich at hvc.rr.com
Mon Jul 27 10:26:35 EDT 2009


Late blight does not always strike in the northeast because, except in  
diseased potato tubers, it does not overwinter here. It gets here via  
infected plants or, when weather conditions (cool and rainy) are just  
right for it to hopscotch here from the south, where it does  
overwinter. It very well could have (and probably did) get a start  
here on some tomato plants at big box stores, then hopscotched around  
from gardens to farms, etc.

Lee Reich, PhD

Books by Lee Reich:
A Northeast Gardener's Year
The Pruning Book
Weedless Gardening
Uncommon Fruits for Every Garden
Landscaping with Fruit

On Jul 27, 2009, at 6:49 AM, Alan Haigh wrote:

> Yup, the media has been abuzz about tainted tomato plants and the  
> blight issue here in the northeast but I doubt any scientific  
> connection exists between the big box plants (seeds?) and the early  
> late blight this year.  There has just been an incredible amount of  
> rain.  I would expect my late blight to be early with 2 straight  
> months of rain in the double digits with inadequate sun between  
> storms.
> Of course my property has had early blight for well over a decade so  
> I'm pretty sanguine at this point although my neighbor gardener says  
> the latest blight is a new strain and we need to rogue out any  
> plants showing symptoms.  I'll wait to see what happens next season  
> to draw any conclusions.  It was a lot more fun growing tomatoes  
> before blight arrived, I will say that.
> Still, I'm harvesting enough for my family and have 3 healthy plants  
> in my unheated greenhouse to click in when the others die off.  Good  
> thing- I wouldn't want to rely on farmers markets for tomatoes this  
> year.
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