Last year I had some problems with my tomatoes getting blossom end rot. The usual reason for a tomatoes getting this sunken pit at their base is a lack of calcium. Sometimes the lack of calcium comes from not enough calcium in the soil or it may come from too much or too little water and draught stress. Sometime it's due to rapid, vegetative growth due to excessive nitrogen fertilization. These conditions reduce the uptake and movement of calcium into the plant.
Last year's draught made watering problematic so that probably created the stress that led to blossom rot in my tomatoes, but this year, to cover my bases, I wanted to make sure that my plants had plenty of calcium in the soil.
I came across this recipe for a homemade tomato fertilizer from www.mypetchicken.com
Shannon’s Homemade Monster Tomato Fertilizer recipe:
2-3 dozen crush egg shells (I hadn't save enough shells when I made this, so I also added some crushed oyster shell - the same oyster shell I offer to the chickens to strengthen their shells)
2 cups bone meal
1/2 cup Epsom salts
14 crushed aspirin (a natural rooting hormone!)
We put a heaping spoonful of this mixture into each hole as we planted each tomato plant - and the leftovers went in with the peppers and cucumbers.
The plants have taken off! Now I just have to wait to see if the calcium and regular watering will take care of the blossom rot problem!
Did you know?
Tomatoes are thought to originate in Peru. The name comes from the Aztec “xitomatl,” which means “plump thing with a navel”.