Preventing Tomato Disease
In the Indoor Garden

Preventing tomato disease depends on your ability to eliminate sources of tomato disease. A study has shown the following to be the largest sources of tomato disease in studied greenhouses...

  1. field trimmed transplants

  2. unsterilized transplanting trays

  3. unsterilized potting soil

  4. improperly fumigated greenhouse

  5. nesting insects from outdoors

  6. diseased perennials nearby

  7. failure to rotate crops

  8. overhead irrigation

  9. contaminated garden tools

Since we are gardening indoors, and are not shipping out tomatoes anywhere, many of these sources are eliminated. This makes preventing tomato disease much easier for the indoor grower. The greatest sources of disease for the indoor grower are...

  1. unsterilized transplanting trays

  2. unsterilized potting soil

  3. failure to rotate crops

  4. contaminated garden tools

  5. blossom end rot

Unsterilized Transplanting Trays

If you are not using new, disposable trays each time you are transplanting, than wash your trays with soap and water before you use them... simple as that. If you have a recurring problem with disease, you may want to soak your trays in a 10% bleach solution as part of a larger effort to eliminate the source.

Unsterilized Potting Soil/Failure to Rotate

As a rule of thumb, you should never use soil from outdoors or reuse soil right away, without composting it first. Neither of these will be sterile sources of soil. The best solution is to make a fresh soilless mix each time.

A good place to start would be equal parts vermiculite, perlite, and sphagnum peat, than add 10% worm castings to it. Adding 1 teaspoon of lime per gallon of soil will help prevent blossom end rot later.

Reusing soil before the roots and other organic matter have had a chance to break down is much like failing to rotate crops outdoors. Using a sterile soil mix to begin with will go a long way toward preventing tomato disease.

Contaminated Garden Tools

One of the easiest ways of preventing tomato disease is to always be clean. One of the most common examples would be when a gardener is pruning the suckers away. Contamination can occur at the root level, too, from your other tools. The best solution is to wash your hands when cloning or pruning, and wash your tools regularly with soap and water in between uses.

Blossom End Rot

Blossom end rot occurs when a tomato plant has set many fruit, but now there is not enough calcium to properly develop them all. Even if there is enough calcium, high humidity will prevent its transport within the tomato plant. The result is rotten fruit. You can prevent this nutrition related disease by keeping your humidity lower and properly feeding your tomato plants. Visit my how to grow tomatoes page to find out how.

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Check out some Hydroponic Gardening Tips and Tricks

Learn How to Grow Hydro- a page of feeding tips

Dirt Cheap organic and hydroponic gardening supplies

Find out the cheapest and easiest ways to garden productively in this article.

Hi everyone, Jason from Jason's Indoor Guide here. When I got started with hydroponic gardening more than 20 years ago, my first garden used rockwool cubes and B.C. Nutrients....and I remember thinking to myself yeah, sure, there may be a lot of advantages to gardening with hydroponics, for example there are very few pest problems, therefore very little pest control, no weeding, no plowing or tilling the soil, no soil testing or having to add things into the garden soil, no watering the garden....but for someone who just wants to grow their own vegetables and have more control over their food supply and the quality of the food that they eat, the cost of constantly having to buy grow media and hydroponic nutrients makes this an expensive hobby for most people.

I suppose when you take into consideration how much money you save NOT having to buy food at the grocery store, it is surely cheaper to grow your own food hydroponically even with the cost of high quality nutrients. Nevertheless, I didn't have a whole lot of money to work with and I needed to make my efforts as affordable and effective as possible....and in the last 20 years I HAVE learned a thing or two!

As you browse through Jason's Indoor Guide, you will notice all of the systems that I use personally are homemade systems. As I got 3 or 4 years of experience under my belt, I quickly adopted a preference to standing water systems and systems that use expanded clay pellets or lava rock, because the media is re-usable and it eliminates a huge operating expense. So once a hydroponic system is built, garden maintenance is minimal- check and adjust the nutrient solution daily, and to change it completely every 2 weeks....and the biggest operating cost is the hydroponic nutrients. (and the electric bill, lol).

And, regarding the cost of the nutrients....I experimented for about 3 years with making different compost teas and nutrient teas, but there is still a lot of expense $$$ associated with making high quality nutrient kelp meal, liquid seaweed, rock dust, bat guano, un-sulfured molasses, worm castings. You can eliminate a lot of this expense by becoming an expert at making high-quality colloidal humus compost, and use your properly made compost as the basis of your hydroponic nutrient solution.

Make a year's worth of compost in one week!

What is colloidal humus?

Make the world's best compost

Unfortunately, I have been gardening for over 20 years and I have only just recently mastered this difficult skill....and even then, only because I happened to find a very easy to follow, high quality technique and decided to follow the instructions to the letter. I produced more high quality compost in just one week than I was able to use in a whole year! I highly recommend it. It is one of the top 3 things you can do to increase the productivity of your food production efforts, while at the same time decreasing the amount of effort required to grow all of your own food, and decreasing the total cost of operating your food production system.

And when I say decrease operating costs, I mean decrease them to almost ZERO, especially if you are producing your own nutrients.

High Efficiency

One final solution to eliminate the cost of your hydroponic nutrients: Imagine a hydroponic system that does not require you to buy any nutrients, does not require you to make your own compost, and does not require you to brew your own nutrient tea. Seriously! No cost and no effort as far as providing nutrients to your plants is concerned. Plus, at the end of the gardening cycle, you harvest all of your garden vegetables, PLUS YOU HARVEST FISH from the system!


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This solution is aquaponics. If you are serious about producing all of your own food and being self-sufficient, this is the ultimate solution for reducing expenses (as much as possible), reducing the total amount of work required, and maximizing the productivity of your gardening efforts. I have been gardening for over 20 years, and it is the perfect food production solution in my opinion.

Produce garnden vegetables AND fish together. Eliminate fertilizer costs!

Besides mastering how to make high quality compost, learning aquaponics is one of the top 3 things you can do to increase your garden productivity, reduce your total costs, and reduce your total work. The product that I learned from is called Aquaponics4you. With all of my hydroponic gardening experience, the first time I came across the Aquaponics4you product I knew immediately that it was something very special! Place an aquaponics system outdoors and use the sun instead of grow lights, and you have reduced every garden expense to nearly ZERO!

High Efficiency
Soil Gardening

This is where my advice ends for people growing in water. But some of you out there are in love with soil gardening and organic gardening, and rightly so! It's a pro-human activity. It is pro-conservation. It is pro-life. It nurtures and promotes life at all levels, from the micro-organisms to beneficial insects, to healthy humans. It's natural. it's spiritual. Gardening is written deeply into our DNA, like how you feel watching a bonfire or sitting by the ocean or next to a river.

My friend John at Food4Wealth has more than 20 years experience organic gardening, so he reminds me a lot of myself. He knows organic gardening like I know hydroponic gardening, and over the years he has learned just about every trick there is to organic gardening. He knows what makes the plants grow, and he knows how to do it with as little effort as humanly possible. His garden never needs digging, naturally repels pests, has no weeds, always produces more than his family is able to eat, produces vegetables everyday all year round, and....only requires 8 HOURS of light, easy effort PER YEAR!

Low effort organic gardening!

Years and years of experience and results can't be argued with....the Food4Wealth gardening strategy is one of the top 3 things you can do to increase your productivity, reduce your total costs, and reduce your total work....specifically for organic gardeners who love soil gardening. THIS is the most efficient and productive way to do organic gardening, period! And combined with the ability to make a years' worth of colloidal humus compost in just one week (see World's Best Compost), this overall organic soil gardening strategy is just unstoppable- foolproof, low cost, and low effort!

Learn about high yield organic gardening

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