Growing Tomatoes In a Tropical Country

Question

What effective techniques or solutions do you suggest for large agricultural production of tomatoes in a tropical country?

 

George

Dear Germain,

Thank you for your question. Although you did not mention a specific country, my answer will refer to tropical regions in general.

When growing tomatoes, even in small plots, the conditions are very important. Am I right in assuming that in your tropical area, the method used is stacked tomatoes in the field?

First of all, tropical country or areas face diseases that attack the tomatoes under conditions of high humidity or even rain, such as Fusarium race 3 (Fol3), and not all the varieties are resistance to these diseases. The variety you grow must be resistant to Fol3, or you need to graft the tomato on a rootstock that is Fol3 resistant. But remember that you must first ensure that the plant is not dying as a result of an attack by a specific disease. High humidity, also increases the foliage diseases as Phytophora, Alternaria, Cladosporium, Bacterial diseases and others.

Another risk this crop faces is TSWV (Tomato Spotted Wilt Virus) disease that transmitted by Thrips. There are many varieties that are TSWV resistant.

Another problem that is common in many tropical areas is TYLCV disease that transmitted by the white fly. In this case also you must use TYlCV resistant varieties. Yet this does not provide absolute insurance that the variety will resist infection, so you must help the crop by also by spraying against Bemisia Tabacci (White fly), and insure that the plant does not suffer from stress that weakling the plant.

Under local conditions in the tropics, with high humidity or rain, you should use a technique based on stacks to make sure that the fruits will not come into contact with wet soil to prevent fruit from rotting.

When growing in a dry or wet season, you must make sure that the water will not be blocked inside the irrigation tunnels. This means that you must have a sufficient slope to remove the water from the plots. In this case, you should prepare beds that are as high as possible – 30 cm.

When growing tomatoes in hot temperatures, you must choose varieties that have a high temperature fruit set.

The direction of the rows must provide good ventilation so that the plants (fruits & foliage) will dry in order to prevent diseases.

These are my main recommendations

I will be glad to answer any specific questions you may have.

Wishing you successful growing,

 

Best Regards