Splitting Tomatoes – Cause and Cure

Q.  I live in St. George, Utah and because of the heat I have been watering a couple of times a day. Nearly all of my tomatoes are splitting. Is it caused by too much watering? What can I do to alleviate the problem.

A.  Splitting tomatoes are not caused by too much water, but by sudden changes causing quick growth  which the skin can’t handle – usually when the fruit is beginning to ripen – and/or excess heat. Can you give your tomatoes some shade during the hottest part of the day?  And in hot weather it’s better to feed your plants one half the amount of fertilizer and do it twice each week, to lessen the incidence of sudden growth spurts.

Jim Kennard