What Happens If You Overwater Tomato Plants?


Home-grown tomatoes are a vegetable that most amateur gardeners look forward to every year. While they are fairly easy to take care of, caution and a watchful eye on plant care are still necessary to ensure a successful harvest. Overwatering tomato plants is a common error. The amount of water you need will vary depending on the temperature, type of tomato plant and the type of soil.

Crown Rot

  • Crown rot is identified by leaves that turn brown, yellow or black. Eventually, these leaves will wilt and droop downward -- a sign of an unhealthy plant. Crown rot will begin with the yellowing of older leaves but will eventually spread to newer leaves and the rest of the tomato plant. Overwatering will cause excessive dampness on the leaves, which encourages mold and mildew growth, leading to crown rot. Water early rather than later in the day.

Splitting Tomatoes

  • Overwatering tomatoes will create watery tasting fruit. In extreme cases, it will cause the tomatoes to crack on the vines because they are holding too much water. If your tomatoes appear healthy except for cracks in the surface, then you are likely overwatering your plants.

Root Rot

  • Root rot is caused by fungi, but it almost always involves poor soil nutrition, inadequate drainage and overwatering. Treating root rot once it has taken hold is almost impossible for home gardeners. Properly preparing your soil with compost and tilling will help prevent root rot. Making sure you do not routinely overwater your tomato plants will also help prevent root rot.

Blossom End Rot

  • Blossom end rot is first apparent when there are large, black leathery patches on the blossom end of your tomatoes. Blossom end rot will begin as light brown watery lesions on the bottom end of your tomato, and they will enlarge until they become black. There is more than one cause to blossom end rot, including temperature changes. However, having an unsteady supply of water will greatly contribute to blossom end rot. Overwatering on a regular basis and then submitting your tomato plants to drought make them highly susceptible to blossom end rot.

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