Disease on tomato plants is a serious problem for both farmers and gardeners. Tomato is a wonderful fruit vegetable that is grown worldwide for the taste and nutritive value of its fruit. But disease on tomato plants can cause loss in total yield and quality of the fruit.

disease on tomato plants
Disease on tomato plants

The total production of tomato of the world in the year 2017 is estimated to be around 182,301,395 metric tonnes. Hence it is a huge source of income for farmers, exporters and all the people involved in agriculture sector.

A farmer or a gardener will not not want to notice disease on tomato plants, it can cause them a huge loss in terms of both production and money. So it becomes very important to know about disease on tomato plants to cure and prevent your tomato plant from diseases.

1. Damping Off

Causal Organism of damping off disease in tomato: Pythium aphanidermatum.

Favourable Condition

Diseases don’t occur and spread without a favourable environment. So understanding about favourable condition of the particular disease become an important chapter. Don’t miss it out and read carefully.

Low temperature below 24 degree celsius, cloudy weather, high soil as well as atmospheric moisture is the favourable condition for spread of damping off disease.

Few factors adds spark to this favourable conditions that ensures high percentage of disease spread, these factors are:

  • Poor drainage,
  • Dampness that is caused due to heavy rain,
  • High density of seedlings, and
  • Excess of soil solutes.


  • Symptom of damping off disease in tomato occur in two stages, the first stage is pre-emergence and the second stage is post-emergence.
  • Pre-emergence symptom: Death of the seedlings as soon as it emerges out of the soil surface.
  • The seedlings rot completely and the young radicle and plumule gets killed.
  • Post-emergence symptom: Infection occurs in young juvenile tissues in collar at the ground level. The affected part becomes very soft and weak that results in collapsing of the plant.

Treatment and Cure
  • If you are a farmer then take care of the drainage in your field, adopting raised seed bed will help to save your tomato crop from this disease.
  • For gardeners, maintain good drainage in germination pots.
  • For both farming and gardening, do not apply excess of water at once, adopt the practice of light but frequent irrigation to make your plants healthy.
  • You can also treat your seeds before sowing with Trichoderma viride @ 4 grams per Kg seeds. If you don’t have T. viride then you can use Thiram @ 3 grams per Kg. of seeds.
  • If you are growing tomato in your garden then make sure that you purchase high quality disease resistant seeds from the market.
  • In the case if infection occurs then you can spray 0.2% Metalaxyl in your crop during late evening or early morning. 

2. Early Blight

Causal organism of early blight disease in tomato: Alternaria solani.

Favorable Condition

  • The favourable condition for the spread of early blight disease is nearly same as the favourable condition for damping off disease with one difference.
  • In the case of early blight disease warm and rainy weather, and wet soil favours the growth of this disease.


  • This disease can occur in any stage of the plant and symptoms can be observed on foliage part of the plant.
  • Small black lesions occur on the older foliage part of the tomato plant. With time these spots starts becoming larger. 
  • They reaches 1/4 th inch in diameter, at this stage of infection concentric rings in the bull’s eye pattern can be seen in the centre.
  • Lesions occurring in both leaves and stems are nearly same. They can also affect the fruit and reduce the fruit quality.

Treatment and Cure

  • For the treatment of this disease prune the infected parts immediately. If the disease has spread all over your plants then it is better to destroy the infected plant to save other plants.
  • For farmers it is advisable to practice crop rotation to minimize the risk of disease incidence.
  • To control this disease in your farm or garden, you can spray Mancozeb 0.2% in the late evenings or early mornings.

3. Fusarium Wilt

Causal organism of fusarium wilt in tomato: Fusarium oxysporum.

Favourable Condition

  • High moisture in soil and high temperature favours the growth of this disease.
  • Fusarium wilt in tomato spreads from contaminated soil and implements.

  • The first symptom is chlorosis of the leaves. The younger plants start dying one by one and the. The petiole and leaves droop and wilt.
  • Lower leaves starts yellowing and then affected ones wilt and die. As the disease spreads in the plant, the stem and vascular system starts browning and at the end tomato plant dies.

Treatment and Cure

  • Remove and destroy the affected part of the plant immediately.
  • Spray Carbendazim @ 0.1% on the infected parts to control fusarium wilt in tomato.




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