Celebrity Tomatoes

Daniel Gill  |  7/3/2015 5:52:20 AM

Picture of tomatoes with holes caused by a caterpillar called the tomato fruit worm.

Ok Dan, here are the particulars:

  • Celebrity tomatoes.
  • Grown in a raised garden.
  • Picked July 1, 2015.
  • Tomatoes are slightly deformed with what appear to be holes that are not created from the inside (could be wrong here).
  • Is my problem a pest, a disease, soil makeup, too much water or not enough water?
  • Here in Houma, we have been experiencing afternoon rains which are quite heavy at times.

Any help is greatly appreciated.

- Percy R.

The holes are caused by a caterpillar called the tomato fruit worm. Spraying your tomatoes once a week with insecticides to control caterpillars, such as BT, spinosad (these first two are organic options), carbaryl or permethrin, will keep this damage to a minimum. Begin spraying early in the season when you see the first sign of damage or before.

These holes often allow secondary fungal infections that will rapidly rot the fruit. When you find a damaged fruit, bring it inside to ripen indoors where lower humidity and cooler temperatures reduce the chances of the fruit rotting before it ripens.

Dan Gill
Consumer Horticulture Specialist

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