- Tomato

Tomato Tomato

Tomato Russeting

Other

Fruit Deformation


In a Nutshell

  • Concentric cracks appear on the fruit and the cuticle starts to have a grayish aspect.
  • This disorder is mainly caused by water- or humidity-related problems.

Symptoms

Numerous, minutes, hair-like cracks appear on the tomato skin, often following a concentric pattern. The cuticle starts to take a grayish aspect. The cracks are only a few millimeters long and usually start to appear around the beginning of maturation. Fruits directly exposed to excess of pesticides are especially prone to develop this kind of lesions. The pesticide burns lower skin elasticity and favor cracking.

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Hosts

Trigger

The physiological disorder can be confused with growth cracks, even though the marks due to russeting are much smaller, shorter and superficial. It is often linked with very humid greenhouse environments and fluctuations of soil moisture and day/night temperature. Inappropriate levels of water (drought, fluctuation in watering/rain, flooding), excess/deficiency of nutrients and light intensity can also be the cause. Finally the wrong or extensive use of pesticides may exacerbate the situation. The fruits are especially vulnerable as they are at the growing tips and have to compete with the new shoots for water and nutrients.

Organic Control

No biological treatment is available for this disorder. It can only be treated by preventive measures.

Chemical Control

Always consider an integrated approach with preventive measures and biological treatments if available. This disease can only be treated by preventive measures, the damage is irreversible. However, avoid excessive use and mix of pesticides in order to avoid symptoms of this disorder.

Preventive Measures

  • Be careful with pesticide treatment and avoid excessive use and mixing of different pesticides.
  • Make sure your plants have enough foliar cover to protect the fruit.
  • Apply adequate mulch in hot weather to keep the soil cool and decrease evaporation.
  • Consider raised bed for better drainage of the soil.
  • Water in mid-morning and not during the hottest time of the day.
  • Use shading material to enhance a cooling effect on the entire plant.
  • Pick tomato early when fruit shows color.

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