Monday, March 24, 2014

My Tomatoes' Journey: Eggshells (Part 6)

While learning about growing tomatoes, I ran across the suggestion of using eggshells to prevent blossom end rot. Last year, my tomatoes got hit hard with this, and I'd like to avoid it if at all possible. 

Blossom End Rot
Blossom end rot generally happens because of too much moisture, which is what happened last year with all the rain. (Apparently this can happen with really dry conditions as well. These tomatoes sure are finicky!) Monitoring moisture levels and introducing enough calcium to the soil will help prevent blossom end rot. Low and behold, eggshells provide a rich source of calcium! So, I will be adding eggshells to my soil this year when planting.

Simply save your eggshells, and let them dry for about a day. I like to rinse mine out before setting them back into the egg carton. 

To crush the eggshells, put 12 shells in a plastic bag and smash them with a rolling pin. I store the shell crumbs in increments of 12 eggshells, because each plant will need about a dozen shells. Then, store in a plastic baggie or container until ready to use. 

Use the eggshell crumbs in a month or so after you plant your tomato plants outdoors. Add approximately 12 crushed eggshells to each hole before planting your tomato plant. This seems like a lot to me, so I'll see how I feel when I actually plant the tomatoes outside. 

So, start saving your eggshells!

Check out my other posts on My Tomatoes' Journey.