NDSU Extension Service - Ramsey County

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July 30, 2012 Horticulture Column

Gardening in your yard!!

Master Gardener Classes

Master gardener classes are to start August 17th.  These classes will run for 6 consecutive weeks from 8:30 to 12:30 every Friday.  There are two forms of training with the only difference being a volunteer or non volunteer.  A volunteer needs to provide 40 hours of time back to the community and the cost is $100 while the non-volunteer does not and the cost is $200.  To register contact the local Extension office at 701-662-7027 for the address to get registered.  Classes will be held at the School for the Deaf IVN center.

Blossom End Rot in Tomatoes???

A water-soaked spot at the blossom end of tomato fruits is the classic symptom of blossom-end rot. This relatively common garden problem is not a disease, but rather a physiological disorder caused by a calcium imbalance within the plant. It can occur in pepper, squash, cucumber, and melon fruits as well as tomatoes. Blossom-end rot is most common when the growing season starts out wet and then becomes dry when fruit is setting. Damage first appears when fruits are approximately half their full size. The water-soaked areas enlarge and turn dark brown and leathery. These areas will eventually begin to rot, so the fruit should be picked and discarded. Several factors can limit a plant’s ability to absorb enough calcium for proper development. These include: fluctuations in soil moisture (too wet or too dry), an excess of nitrogen in the soil, root damage due to cultivation, soil pH that’s either too high or too low, cold soil and soil high in salts.

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