Hope for Managing Blossom End Rot

Lab Report

By: Ann Northrup

Ann Northrup spent her undergraduate years at the University of Michigan, where she earned a Bachelor of Science in microbiology….

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Blossom end rot (calcium deficiency) on tomato.  Photo: A13ean via Wikimedia Commons

Blossom end rot (calcium deficiency) on tomato. Photo: A13ean via Wikimedia Commons

As tomato plants grow they partition how much calcium goes to leaves and how much to developing fruit. Under rapid growth, or growth under stressful growing conditions, the fruit may get the short end of the stick. Calcium deficiency in the fruit results in blossom end rot. Recent studies show the application of the plant hormone abscisic acid to leaves or roots of young plants can alter calcium partitioning and help relieve the problem.

HortScience, 2014, 49:1397-1402