No showers for tomatoes.

tomatoes on vine
Photo credit: Rachel Beck, EESC
Q:

I read not to spray tomatoes, only hydrate from the bottom. I've heard that spraying on a hot, sunny day can blister veggies. Today I replanted my starter plants; I'm aching to spray them with water because it is so hot today. Should I wait until dusk, spray all veggies but tomatoes?

- Clackamas County, OR
A:

You definitely should irrigate your newly planted transplants. With tomatoes in particular, it is best to keep the foliage dry to minimize potential disease problems. Water the soil around the plant such that it is moist at least 6" down in the root zone of the plant. Use a trowel to dig down outside of the root zone of the plant to make sure that water is percolating down at least that deep after you water. Watering new transplants is critical during hot weather to get them off to a good start.

Weston Miller
Community and Urban Horticulture Faculty
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