University of Illinois Extension

Summer Flowering Shrubs

Watch for blossom-end rot on tomatoes.

Ron Wolford

"Watch for blossom-end rot on tomatoes," said Ron Wolford, U of I horticulturist. "The blossom ends of tomatoes turn brown to black. Peppers and summer squash can also have this problem. This is not a disease. The condition results because of a calcium deficiency caused by wide fluctuations in soil moisture. Maintain even levels of soil moisture to control blossom-end rot. Applying mulch around tomato plants will help."

Tomato with Blossom-end rotDuring hot weather, pick your tomatoes every couple of days. Ninety degrees Fahrenheit and higher temperatures can speed up the softening process, slow down color development and reduce quality. Picking your ripening tomatoes will also keep the squirrels from snacking on them.