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  • Writer's pictureWilliam Benson

Overcoming Blossom End Rot in Your Tower Garden: A Step-by-Step Guide to Healthy, Bountiful Harvests


Blossom End rot on a Tower Garden zucchini

Introduction:


Nurturing your TowerGarden Home, you anticipate lush, vibrant plants and a plentiful bounty of fruits and vegetables. Yet, even the most diligent gardeners may stumble upon horticultural hurdles. One such hurdle could be the disappointing sight of Blossom End Rot (BER) affecting not only your zucchini but also a variety of other plants such as tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants.

Seeing Blossom End Rot on your lovingly maintained crops can be disheartening, but it's essential to remember that it's not a death sentence for your garden or a critique of your gardening abilities.

In this blog post, we'll delve into what causes Blossom End Rot in a range of plants, and share strategies for preventing it in your domestic aeroponic system. We'll also detail how you can effectively supplement your hydro system with a product known as CalMag to combat this issue, ensuring a healthy and productive Tower Garden Home.


What is Blossom End Rot?

Blossom End Rot is a common plant disease that affects the fruits of several species, including zucchini, tomatoes, peppers, and more. It manifests as a dark, water-soaked spot on the blossom end of the fruit (the end opposite the stem). This spot expands and darkens over time, often causing the fruit to rot prematurely.



Blossom end rot on a Tower Garden tomatoe

Why Do Plants Get Blossom End Rot?

Blossom End Rot is a physiological disorder caused by a calcium deficiency within the plant. This doesn't necessarily mean your hydro solution is lacking calcium, but rather the plant is unable to effectively uptake or distribute calcium to its fruits.

Three main factors contribute to calcium uptake issues:

  1. Inconsistent watering: Water is the vehicle through which calcium is transported within the plant. Inconsistent watering can disrupt calcium movement, leading to a deficiency in fruits.

  2. Root damage: Damaged or unhealthy roots may struggle to absorb enough calcium from the nutrient solution.

  3. High salinity or competitive nutrients: High salinity in the solution can hinder calcium uptake, and certain nutrients (like potassium and magnesium) can compete with calcium for uptake if their levels are excessively high.

Preventing Blossom End Rot on a Tower Garden:

Preventing BER largely revolves around addressing these issues. Consistent watering, ensuring root health, and proper nutrient balance are key.


Adding CalMag to Your Hydro System:

CalMag is a popular supplement that includes vital elements for plant development, namely calcium and magnesium. However, introducing CalMag into a hydro system requires careful

Blossom End rot on a chilli Tower Garden

attention to avoid disrupting the nutrient balance, particularly considering the competition between nutrients for plant uptake.


The steps to correctly add CalMag into your hydro system are:
  1. Test Your Water: Regularly test your water to ensure it maintains the optimal pH level (5.5 - 6.5 for most aeroponic systems). This guarantees the maximum nutrient availability to the plants.

  2. Slow Addition: Rather than adding a large quantity of CalMag to your system all at once, introduce it gradually. Keep an eye on the system's pH level and the health of your plants during this process.

  3. Maintain Nutrient Balance: Keep in mind that an overabundance of magnesium can compete with calcium absorption, which underscores the importance of nutrient balance. Look out for signs of nutrient burn in your plants (such as yellowing or browning leaves) as an indication of nutrient imbalance.

  4. Adjust Nutrient Levels: When introducing CalMag, it may be necessary to adjust the amount of your base nutrient solution to maintain the correct overall nutrient concentration. This depends on the specific nutrient solution you're using and its concentration. If your solution is high in calcium and magnesium, you may reduce it slightly to accommodate the addition of CalMag

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