our tomato plants just keeled over and we're trying to figure out why

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anonymous (not verified)
our tomato plants just keeled over and we're trying to figure out why

 We left town for the weekend, leaving behind two beautiful and lush tomato plants in our Aerogarden Ultra. The plants were probably 18-20 inches tall and each had several small green tomatos growing. They looked very healthy. When we returned two days later, the plants looked like they had been left in a parched desert. We fed then nutrients on schedule right before we left and they still had plenty of water when we returned home. A day later one of the two plants just fell over. The other is still standing but looks pathetic.  We were so excited about our tomatos and this really made us sad. Just wondering if anyone has any tips for what might have gone wrong.  

We just signed up  for this site yesterday and this is our first post. I tried to search to find related links but was not successful. If there are other links you know of, any help on how to locate them would be appreciated.

Thanks for reading!

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julieann22 (not verified)
 Thanks, Gisette! One of our
 Thanks, Gisette! One of our plants was already keeled over and by the time I got this the other looked completely gone. But I did check with Jim and he said he had not changed the water, so we know what we need to do next time. Really appreciate the great trip.

All the best,

Julie
Ginger
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Welcome, Julieann! I wish it

Welcome, Julieann!

I wish it were on a happier occasion!  Sorry to hear about your tomato.

My best guess is that they really are dying of thirst. Which may seem strange when the reservoir is full. But if you've only ever added nutrients to the reservoir, and never dumped out the previous contents, then... After a while, it's very much like feeding them salt water.

Since the plants are feeling so poorly, I'd hate to pick up the reservoir and dump it in a sink. What I do to drain an Aerogarden reservoir, is use a length of air line hose as a siphon. (Don't suck on it.  Fill the hose with water at the tap, plug one end with a finger until the hose is positioned to drain the reservoir, then unplug finger.) Then refill the reservoir with the nicest water you've got - tap water if that's what you use. And - give them a day of plain clean water before adding a normal dose of AG nutrients. 

I haven't had this problem, because I completely dump and refill my tomato reservoirs every week. But - here are links to my current AG lightscreen cherry tomato project, and a successful lightscreen beefsteak tomato before that. 

The lightscreen part of all that is that I've been developing an Aerogarden accessory: http://indoorsalad.com/

I hope your tomatoes recover!

 

Moderator. Author of Indoor SaladEcigs 102, and the Calm Act climate apocalyptic series.

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