Re: [tomato] Advice on starting my nxt crop of Tomatoes

Doreen Howard (
Wed, 2 Jun 1999 20:52:28 -0500

To answer Richard Dillon's questions:

 Would you be so kind as to expand on your statement ".  So institute a
preventative program of a weekly
>spray with a fungicide and pesticide" - weekly starting now, or after I put
>out my new tomato plants in August?
Start the week after you set out plants in August.

 What pesticide do you use in an organic
>garden?  I have heard that Rotenone is acceptable;  is this what you use?
I use neem seed oil (Fruit, Nut & Veggie Defense) for everything--it's both
a pesticide and a fungicide.  The only other thing I use is Bt.

>Do you mix it with water and the Fruit, Nut and Vegetable Defense as well?
Follow the directions on the bottle--about 1 tbs. to a gallon of warm water.

>Can I mix the fungicide and pesticide with a foliar fertilizer such as fish
I wouldn't.  Make two separate sprayings on two separate days.

Also, I was wondering, what do you do
>to prevent the squash vine borer from eating your squash vines?
Not much you can do.  Squash bugs and vine borers go in cycles.  By planting
squash and pumpkins at three week intervels, you can usually get a decent
crop from one planting.  The others may sucumb to the bugs. Dipel (Bt)
doesn't do a thing to the squash vine borers.  They laugh at it.  So don't
waste your money.  Save Bt for caterpillers and other chewing insects.

I recently planted some yard long beans, but is
>there something else that will grow well this summer?
Yard long or asparagus beans should do very well for you in the heat.  There
are only two other crops that thrive in the Houston summer heat--okra and
sweet potatoes.  You can try watermelon, too, if you are prepared to keep
them well watered.  Good luck and stay cool.  I don't miss the Texas heat
one bit!
Doreen Howard
Zone 5b--Central Illinois, where it was 72F today.