Posted on 25 July 2009 by

Reader Question: No Tomato Blossoms

tomato-blossomBy Vanessa Richins

A reader writes:

“This is the second year that I don’t have any blossoms on my tomato plant….I wheel them in the sun everyday.”

Hello. I’d be interested to learn more about the growing conditions you have for your tomatoes.

Do your plants look generally healthy? Do you fertilize them?

One reason that your tomato plants may not have blossoms is due to an excess of nitrogen. When you see the 3 numbers on the front of a fertilizer package, the first one is nitrogen. This number will tell you the percentage of nitrogen contained in that fertilizer.

Nitrogen is necessary for sufficient plant growth, especially healthy leaves and stems. If you have too much, however, it can make the plant concentrate too much on leaves and stems, and they never get around to producing flowers and fruit.

You could also have too little phosphorous. This is a major plant nutrient and would be the 2nd number on a fertilizer package. Phosphorous aids in flower and fruit production, so too little phosphorous could be a reason you have no blossoms. The leaves would start turning purple.

I would suggest testing your soil to see where your levels are at for nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium. You can buy a kit at a nursery or send a sample to your extension office for a small fee.

Calcium and magnesium also help in blossom development. As a greenthumbs group member suggests, next time you could grind up eggshells and put them in the hole you dig for your plants.

How long are they in the sun? They should get at least 6-8 hours for flowering to begin.

How hot is it there? Tomatoes are a warm season vegetable, but if the temperatures are in the 90s or above, they may not start producing any flowers.

I hope that your tomato starts producing blossoms soon, or you can at least figure out what’s happening so next year can be better. Good luck!

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