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Friday, June 18, 2010

Tomato Distored Leaves: Insects and Glyphosate/Glyophosphate

My distorted tomatoes sat near two locations, I sprayed grass and weed killer. I thought I was safe with no drift in the wind. Glyphosate is the ingredient that can harm your tomatoes (all plants). One of the symptoms of light encounter with glyphosate is the thick distorted leaves at the growing tips of the tomatoes. That is what I have. The other culprit is insects. The tomatoes in my garden that have been harmed have all been near spray points. I am not sure if it was 100% glyphosate damage or insects or both. Because the plants are growing very very well even with distortions, I don't think it is a virus.

The 7 plants away from spray points show no signs of the distortion. They all came from the same group of tomatoes I grew from seedlings.

Note to self. Minor drift of glyphosphate or my hand actually spreading the chemicals is a greater risk then I thought. I may test this theory on some left over plants.

Below is information written by Steven Gower. Note the sentence I bolded and put in italics.

Glyphosate injury on tomato

Steven Gower, MSU Diagnostic Services

July 9, 2008
Several tomato samples have been submitted to the lab over the past 10 days with symptoms consistent with glyphosate injury. In most of these cases, the injury resulted from glyphosate spray drift likely from neighboring corn and soybean fields. Occasionally, the injury resulted from glyphosate contamination in the tank used to apply pesticides to the tomatoes.

Specific symptoms of glyphosate injury will vary depending on several factors including exposure dose, tomato growth stage, growing conditions after exposure, etc. Glyphosate is translocated inside the plant to the newest meristematic regions; therefore the newest growth will be most injured.

Tomatoes injured with glyphosate will have distorted new growth with cupped, fringed and small leaflets. Often, the newest leaves will contain a proliferation of buds and small leaflets. Many of the leaflet bases will contain a yellow to white discoloration – a diagnostic clue of glyphosate injury on tomato.

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