Weed control for tomatoes can be a major problem for many organic vegetable farmers. It can involve different kinds of mulches, flaming, or organic herbicides. What’s more, organic weed control can have an effect on the quality of soils.

The latest Focus on Tomato webcast, titled “Weed Control Considerations for Organic Tomato Production” explores the links between soil quality and organic weed control, including how good soil management may create an environment less favorable to weed growth.

In this talk, Doug Doohan, Professor and State Horticulture & Crop Science Specialist at The Ohio State University, particularly explains:

  • What is meant by ‘soil balancing’, and the science behind the theory of the ‘basic cation saturation ratio approach’ to soil management.
  • Why balanced soil may create an optimum environment for crops to compete with weeds.
  • How the judicious use of limestone and gypsum can improve soil quality.
  • The facts about soil balancing as well as the pseudo-science that is so commonly encountered on this subject.
  • Other proven techniques that will keep weeds under control, whether farming organically, or conventionally.
  • This 42-minute presentation is open access through June 30, 2015.

Users can view other recent webcasts in the Focus on Tomato resource at

Webcasts on a variety of other crops can be found in PMN’s Education Center.

To take advantage of PMN’s full line of resources, please sign up for the PMN Update online newsletter.

The Plant Management Network (www.plantmanagementnetwork.org) is a nonprofit online publisher whose mission is to enhance the health, management, and production of agricultural and horticultural crops. It achieves this mission through applied, science-based resources, like Focus on Tomato.

Source: Ohio Produce Growers & Marketers Association