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When it comes to choosing the best fungicide for tomatoes and for plants in general, the opinions are divided. Some people claim they had great results with a particular product, while others say that it didn’t work for them.
Of course, when you utilize any type of plant treatment, the results can vary greatly depending on many factors.
For instance, the frequency you apply the fungicide, the outdoor temperature, the time of the day when you apply the treatment, how affected were your plants at the time you applied the treatment, whether you used a systemic fungicide or one that’s not absorbed by the plants, and many more.
While most fungicides on the market can be used for a wide range of plants, today I’m going to make a selection of fungicides that can safely be used for various tomato diseases.
Tomato plants are prone to fungal infections that can rapidly spread from the soil to leaves, stem, and eventually to the fruit.
A fungal infection can significantly affect your harvest or it can ruin it altogether.
Once you see advanced signs of fungal infection on your tomato plants it is usually already too late to save the plant.
If your tomato plants grow in conditions that favor the occurrence of fungi diseases, you should treat your plants with a fungicide even before you see the first symptoms on plants.
It’s important to know that not all fungi develop in the same environmental conditions. Some species prefer warm while others thrive in colder environments.
What most fungi have in common is the fact that they usually prefer high-humidity environments.
Several of the most common tomato diseases caused by fungi are:
- Tomato early blight (caused by Alternaria solani)
- Tomato late blight (caused by Phytophthora infestans, a microorganism similar to a fungus)
- Septoria leaf spot (caused by Septoria lycopersici)
- Buckeye rot (caused by Phytophthora parasitica)
- Anthracnose fruit rot (caused by several species of fungi in the genus Colletotrichum)
What is the best fungicide for tomatoes?
There are many products that claim to prevent plant fungal diseases, yet, not all are very effective.
Below is a list of 5 of the best fungicides that have proven to be very efficient in fighting tomato fungi.
1. Mancozeb Flowable with Zinc Fungicide Concentrate
Mancozeb Flowable from Bonide is a fungicide concentrate that is known for its efficiency against a wide range of fungal diseases on plants.
This product can protect your garden against early blight, late blight, leaf spot, rust, downy mildew, botrytis, and other fungal diseases.
I found out about Mancozeb at the recommendation of a friend after my tomato plants were affected by early blight the last year.
This year, it rained a lot and there were all the conditions for plants to develop early blight due to the high humidity.
Fortunately, Mancozeb Flowable did an excellent job and I couldn’t notice any blight symptoms or any other fungal infections on my tomato plants up to this point.
This broad spectrum fungicide also contains Zinc, which is an essential micronutrient for plant development.
According to the manufacturer, this fungicide can be utilized on a large variety of plants, such as tomatoes, potatoes, cucumbers, onions, grapes, melons, apples, roses, azaleas, geraniums, corn, zinnias, and many more.
Since it’s a concentrated product, you have to mix the solution with water before you spray it over your plants (read the label for specific instructions).
2. Spectracide Immunox Multi-Purpose Fungicide Spray Concentrate For Gardens
Spectracide Immunox Multi-Purpose Fungicide Spray is one of my top choices when it comes to choosing a fungicide for my garden.
I use this fungicide for almost any outdoor plant that has a high risk of being affected by a fungal disease and it works like a charm.
According to the product label, Spectracide Immunox can be used for roses, flowers, vegetables, trees, ornamental shrubs, lawns, and nuts.
This fungicide is effective against all major plant diseases caused by a fungal infection like Brown spot, Rust, Powdery mildew, Blight, etc.
Another advantage of this product is that it’s not easily washed away by rain or sprinklers and will protect your plants of fungi for about two weeks after it’s applied.
Just like most fungicides, this product is more effective when it’s applied for prevention or at the first sign of disease.
3. Southern Ag – Liquid Copper Fungicide
Liquid Copper Fungicide from Southern Ag is another effective fungicide I use in my garden to prevent a wide range of fungi-related diseases.
This product can be used for vegetables, ornamental shrubs, fruit and nut crops, turfgrass, etc.
Southern Ag – Liquid Copper Fungicide contains 27.15% copper diammonia diacetate complex (8% Metallic copper equivalent, 0.772 lbs per gallon), which has an active track record against many fungal diseases.
This fungicide comes in a concentrated form. Therefore, you have to mix it with water before you spray it to your plants (read the label for details on how to dilute it for every plant type).
You can effortlessly apply this product using a garden tank sprayer (this is the one I use).
Besides its efficacy, I also find this product to be a cost-effective fungicide.
4. Bonide 811 Copper 4E Fungicide
Copper 4E Fungicide is another efficient fungicide from Bonide.
According to the information I found on the Internet about this product, Copper 4E Fungicide is even approved and suitable for organic gardening (still, make sure you read the label and the instructions before using this product to make sure this information is 100% accurate).
It even seems that this product can even be used up to the day you harvest the fruits and is designed to be safely used around people and pets.
This liquid copper fungicide can help you prevent common fungal infections such as black spot, powdery mildew, downy mildew, plant rust, peach leaf curl, and many others.
Copper 4E can be utilized for a wide range of vegetables, trees, nuts, roses, herbs, ornamental shrubs, and lawn.
5. Daconil Fungicide Concentrate
Daconil Fungicide Concentrate is a highly effective fungicide for tomatoes and not only.
This fungicide stops and prevents over 80 plant diseases caused by different species of bacteria, fungi, and pests.
I discovered this product after reading a few gardening forums.
Several people said that they had very good results with this fungicide and claimed that they were able to get rid of blight and some other tomato diseases after applying this product.
These good reviews convinced me to test out this concentrate and include it in this list of the best fungicides for tomatoes.
Daconil is not a systemic fungicide, which means that the solution is not absorbed into the plant. This has at the same time advantages and disadvantages.
As an advantage, your plants won’t absorb unwanted chemicals.
As a disadvantage, heavy rain can easily wash this solution from the leaves of your plants.
Luckily, since it’s a concentrated fungicide, from one tiny bottle of this product you can make enough liquid to spray your plants several times.
Also, it’s not advisable to use Daconil when the temperatures reach over 80 degrees F (that’s about 26+ Celsius degrees) since it can burn the plant foliage.
To make sure you don’t do more harm than good to your plants due to the excessive summer heat, I would advise you to use this product in the spring until to mid-summer. Once the temperature goes down a little, you can start utilizing it again in the late summer and during the autumn.
Most tomato diseases are caused by fungal infections, that’s why choosing the best fungicide it’s essential.
Keep in mind that all the fungicides are most effective when they are used for prevention or in the early stages of the infection.
To reduce the risk of a fungal disease, you should try to diminish as much as possible the conditions that favor the occurrence of the fungus.
Here are several tips:
- Keep a normal humidity level
- Cut out the plant leaves that hang on the ground (when possible)
- Leave enough space between plants to allow a good air circulation
- Water the vegetables without splashing the leaves
Most of the fungicides on the market are for general use and can be used against a multitude of diseases caused by bacteria and fungi. Even so, make sure you carefully read the instructions and the product label to apply the fungicide in a correct manner and avoid any damage to your plants.