I lost over half my tomatoes this week. Went out Friday, they looked great, Saturday evening, half of them were wilted. They looked like they do when a good frost gets ahold of them. Almost all the leaves dead and crinkled up. Looks like I had the blight. Uprooted them and chucked them. I think perhaps I had them too close together.
Did you by any chance buy seedlings from a walmart/home depot/lowes?
I know that there was a huge nursery that sold hundreds of thousands of tomato seedlings to those stores and that every single one of them were infected with late blight.
Also, try to stay clear of Miracle Grow but yes, pics would definitely help. Also Florida has a good amount of humidity and when the temp lingers in the 80-90s and humid for 6+ hours on average that can easily develop bacterial growth on plants.
As for them being too crowded , simply thin them out a bit. they should be about 2 feet apart. but over crowding wouldn't cause the symptoms you describe. Tomatoes are usually quite drought tolerant. Water them when you notice any wilting and that should suffice.
I always buy my plants from 3 or 4 different sources because sometimes a store like wal mart , lowes, etc will have a bad batch. Mostly I buy them from a reputable nursery.
You only need to feed them once in the spring and once just before harvest. If you work some well rotted cow manure into the soil In the fall and plant the tomatoes there in the spring you really don't have to fertilize them at all.
Another thing is that a kind of blight like condition can occur if one of the trace elements is missing from your soil. I add a small amount of a trace element fertilizer to my regular fertilizer mix. This usually happens if you plant them in the same plot of garden two or more years in a row. The soil will get depleted of a particular element. It is also not a good idea to plant them where corn grew last year as the soil takes a heck of a beating from producing corn stalks.
Also if you used a greenhouse or had them in a confined space for any length of time and someone smoked near them they can get tobbaco mosaic disease which looks like a blight. Greenhouses usually do not hire smokers for this reason.
I use (foliar) seaweed and fish emulsion on mine.My neighbor uses to much miracle grow and has nice plants with little fruit.Everything he grow seems to die a month before mine....He has done this like 30 years....
This is my 75 plant strong patch.I have lost one plant.It was struggling and i yanked it in july
OH MY GOSH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I envy your green thumb they look gorgeous!!!!!!! Just beautiful!!!!!!!!!!! I always tell myself if I wont he lotto I'm buying the enormous empty lot behind my house and doing this! I'm still trying to get my jaw off floor -- not enough words to describe the awe I'm in!
Well, as I stated, we are in Florida. You guys up north are still going strong, but starting to face cooler weather. Here it is still in the 90's. Tomato time is over unless you have some in pots. I am currently starting new seedlings for the Fall tomato planting. With our Summer rains, fungus and molds run rampant during the hottest times of the year.
But the original poster made it sound like they were doing okay and then now something suddenly happened to them. That's why I asked to see pics.
I know very few varieties set fruit over 90 degrees and under 50-55 degrees too.
What did you mean, "unless you have some in pots?" You'd almost think those would do worse in high heat areas because they'd need more water/watering... and more nutrients because of the more frequent watering washing the nutrients out.
Why don't you just grow indeterminate varieties that produce forever until killed by frost or however? Don't anybody spray to control diseases down there?
Cherries will often still set fruit over 90* and I have a few larger slicing & paste varieties that friends grow in South Texas all year long, isn't coastal TX similar climate?
What I mean by pots is that with pots, although you have to water more, you can relocate them to get them out of the extreme heat of the day. I also pot tomatoes during the late Fall and into Winter. If a freeze comes, they can go into the house if needed.
Pretty much if no bugs are present for the OP, the problem he faces is molds and fungus. The tomatoes will still ripen, but production drops, the plant wilts and dies.