I am a farmer from Ethiopia. I have a problem growing good quality tomatoes because of the heat in my farm. How could I protect the tomatoes from the effect of the heat?
Dear Abu Feyissa,
Thanks about your question. High temperatures have a bad effect on tomato yields and tomato quality. High night temperatures upper than 24c damage the production of pollen, causing most of the fruit to remain very small and seedless, including deformations in the fruit shape.
In this case, I recommend that you try (this method does not always work) using hormones in proper percent, twice a week to compensate the pollen production, and continue as long as night temperatures are between 23-26c on consequent 3 nights to protect tomatoes. This may increase the quality of the fruits and the yield.
In the summer season or during periods of hot temperatures, the fruits are less red and soft. The solution is to use Potassium (K) fertilization, with the proper rate of Nitrogen (N). One month before the fruits will change color, fertilize with 2:1:3 of N:P:K. This means that if the quantity you are fertilizing is 4 Kg of pure N/Day/Hectare, Phosphor P must be 2 pure P/day/Hectare, with the main element Potassium (K) – 6 Kg Pure K/day /Hectare. In some cases, if the yield is already full on the plant, and the quality is bad (firmness & color), you can even use rate of N:P:K, 2:1:4 for a short period.
Of course, growing at high places, the night temperature is low, and the fruit set is better, it increases the yield and fruit quality.
In high temperatures, you can use shadow nets of 25-30% shadow to reduce the temperatures in the field or GH.
I hope that this helps you protect tomatoes and improve its yield and quality.
Hazera’s Agro Technical Support Specialist