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Posts Tagged ‘cherry tomatoes’

Troubleshooter – My Plants are Turning Yellow and Not Growing

January 29th, 2010

If the plants in your Aerogarden are turning yellow and not growing…

When more than one pod in a seed kit fails to germinate, or seedlings show yellowed leaves or are stunted growth, chances are they are experiencing a nutrient deficiency. This is generally caused by one of two things:

Using water that is high in dissolved minerals (“hard water”, well water, or water that has been through a water softener), or

Nutrient tablets that were damaged by high heat or humidity, which occasionally occurs in transport or storage.
If your plants are experiencing these symptoms, it will be important for future success to determine which of these may be causing the problem.

Water

Water that is high in dissolved minerals can cause problems with growth in the Aerogarden and many areas in England do have “hard” tap water. If you are using “hard” water, well water, spring water, or “softened” water, you will experience germination and growth problems in your AeroGarden. The dissolved minerals in the water will block the proper uptake of the nutrients by the plants. Hard water is the number one cause of growth problems in the AeroGarden. Most water filters do not remove minerals.
If you think you may have high mineral-content water, we recommend switching to bottled distilled water (not “spring”, “drinking” or “purified” water) instead, which is available at most supermarkets.

Nutrients

If your Seed Kit experienced very high heat or humidity is shipping or storage, the nutrients may become damaged, causing the same nutrient deficiency symptoms. If your nutrients appeared to have dissolved and leaked out of their container in storage/transport please contact us for replacement nutrient tablets (if the item was originally purchased directly from us).
*Please note – nutrients which appear wet or partially dissolved in their bag are not necessarily damaged – if they are in twin packs of just two nutrients you can cut the bag in half and rinse out the contents in a cup of tepid water (including the nutrient tablets themselves) – then empty the contents of this cup into the Aerogarden water bowl. Be sure to store your nutrients in a cool dry place (a fridge is ideal) to prevent any further absorption of liquid.

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Aerogarden.org.uk – Tomato Plant Troubleshooting

October 22nd, 2008

Having problems with your tomatoes not flowering?

Following these steps should ensure that your plants will produce beautiful tomatoes, and will help improve the quality and quantity of any yield.

First, consider how long your plants been growing.  It can be anywhere between 8 – 12 weeks before the plants produce fruit, and sometimes all that is required is a little patience.

Have you…

Thinned the plants?

When plants are about 1” tall, they should be thinned back to one plant per pod.  If this step has not been done, it should be.  Keep the healthiest plant in the pod and cut the others out at the base of the plant. Too many plants growing from one pod can have negative effects on the plants.

Pruned the plants at the 4-5 week period?

At about 4-5 weeks, the main stem of the plant should be cut in half.  This pruning, along with regular ongoing pruning, will keep the plants short and bushy (like a Christmas tree) instead of tall with leaves just at the top (like a palm tree).  

If the plant has not been pruned, it needs to be.  Cutting the main stem in half is not advisable for larger plants (over 6 weeks) but refer to the Tending and Harvesting Guide for pruning instructions – they still need to be pruned! Photosynthesis will take place even if there are only a few leaves on the plant, so we encourage you to prune even if there is not much there.  If all of the growth is at the top of the plant, pruning is needed to get the plant back down to a bushy size and shape.

Set the lights timer to go off at night?

Fruiting plants need complete darkness for at least 7 hours every night in order to produce fruit – this means that the lights need to be synched up to turn off at night time, and that the plants are not exposed to any artificial light during this dark period.

Instructions for setting the “on” time of your lights:

At the time you want the lights to come on, press the “Lights” button and hold it down until the LED light next to the plant selection flashes, and continue holding it until the LED light blinks faster — about 12 seconds, then immediately release the button. Your lights will now come on at this time each day. (It will take several seconds for the lights to come on.

To view a complete chart of the Timing of the Lights and Pump Cycles for the different Seed Kits, click here

OTHER FACTORS TO CONSIDER:

– Have nutrients been added at regular 2-week intervals?  If you have been adding nutrients every time the light comes on, has it been coming on every 2 weeks?  Pressing reset at any other time than just after adding nutrients will effect the nutrient timer. 

Grow Bulbs

–Tomato production will be significantly better with fresh bulbs – they should be changed roughly every 6 months for optimal plant growth.

Type of water being used

– if you live in a hard tap water area, or have been using high mineral content spring water, the pH levels in your aerogarden may be unsuitable for plant health, and could cause yellowing of the leaves or lack of fruit.

Read more on our blog here

Tobacco Mosaic Virus

– If your plant looks like it is actually dying, it may have Tobacco Mosaic Virus. This causes a mosaic pattern on leaves (and even fruit) and causes the leaves to fall off.   A plant affected by this disease will most likely not produce fruit. 

IF ALL OF THE STEPS ABOVE HAVE BEEN FOLLOWED AND THE PLANTS ARE HEALTHY BUT STILL NOT PRODUCING:

1) Rinse and refill the bowl

A Rinse-and-Refill consists of unplugging the AeroGarden, emptying all the water out of the Bowl, refilling it with fresh water, and putting in two fresh nutrient tablets. This will return nutrient and pH levels to normal if they have gotten outside of optimal range. Please click here for complete instructions on how to do a Rinse-and-Refill.

2) Prune branches back another 1” -2” and drop the lights down, if necessary.

Complete BOTH steps 12 at the same time

So, rinse and refill and prune at the same time.  Then give the plants one week to ‘recover’ and blooms should appear within the next week.  It is fine to prune during the recovery period if necessary.

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