Can Eggshells Prevent Blossom End Rot?
Blossom end rot is a calcium deficiency, but that deficiency is normally caused by uneven water availability to the plant. Eggshells will not help prevent this problem.
Most of us have heard that eggshells can help increase the calcium in our garden soil, and some of us may have even tried it in our own yards.
The goal is to help prevent blossom end rot on tomatoes and other plants affected by calcium deficiency. As it turns out, using eggshells really doesn’t fix anything. Here’s why:
Blossom end rot is a calcium deficiency, but that deficiency is normally caused by uneven water availability to the plant. In other words, even if your soil has plenty of calcium, the plant can’t take it up if there isn’t enough moisture in the soil. So, it’s best to keep soils evenly moist, especially when they begin to bloom. If your plants wilt because of inadequate moisture, the fruit are more likely to develop blossom end rot.
However, some soils do not have enough calcium and that will help cause blossom end rot.
It’s best not to guess whether your soil has enough calcium or not. To ensure your plants will get enough calcium, do a soil test. That’s the only way to know for sure, and then you can adjust the soil accordingly.
Get a video tutorial on How to Take a Soil Sample and tips from the soil testing lab manager in our previous blog post on this topic.
You can download soil sample submission forms, gets answers to frequently asked questions, and find more information about soil testing and the services offered by the MSU Soil Testing Lab on the lab’s web page.
Need more help understanding how to take a soil sample or interpreting your results? Your local Extension agent can help you with that.
Extension Publication 2975, “Tomato Troubles: Common Problems with Tomatoes” explains how to manage various disorders and issues, including misshapen fruit, leaf yellowing, leaf rolling, and small fruit.
Don’t think blossom end rot is what’s affecting your tomatoes? Read Extension Publication 3175, “Common Diseases of Tomatoes” to learn about the signs and symptoms of tomato diseases and management practices.
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