Black Berries On Your Tomatoes?
Advice for the Home Gardener from the Help Desk of the
UC Master Gardener Program of Contra Costa County
Client's Request: Hello, I'm seeing these black “berries” growing on my Stupice tomatoes that I purchased and planted… or maybe they aren't “tomatoes”? The photos I've attached (below) show that the the straight thin stems with the berries do seem to come from the very base of the plant. The tomato on the same (?) plant also has a mottled look to it? Is that a problem. Thanks for any info you can provide.
MGCC Help Desk Response: Thank you for sending your photos to the UC Master Gardener Program Help Desk. It looks like a nightshade weed has grown in the same place as your tomato. (Tomatoes are also members in the nightshade family). Most likely, it was a weed seed in the same small pot when you got your tomato plant. The best thing to do right now is cut the nightshade stem as close to the ground as possible. You don't want to pull it because it might damage the adjacent “real” tomato's roots. Dispose of the plant and the berries in your green waste can--you don't want these to multiply in your yard.
As far as the mottling on your green tomato, it doesn't really look abnormal. In my experience, as soon as the fruit turns red, you won't see that kind of mottling. The tomato diseases that cause mottled fruit don't look like your tomato.
Please don't hesitate to contact us again.
Help Desk of the UC Master Gardener Program of Contra Costa County (SEH)
Note: The UC Master Gardeners Program of Contra Costa's Help Desk is available year-round to answer your gardening questions. Except for a few holidays, we're open every week, Monday through Thursday for walk-ins from 9:00 am to Noon at 75 Santa Barbara Road, 2d Floor, Pleasant Hill, CA 94523. We can also be reached via telephone: (925)646-6586, email: firstname.lastname@example.org, or on the web at http://ccmg.ucanr.edu/Ask_Us/ MGCC Blogs can be found at http://ccmg.ucanr.edu/HortCoCo/ You can also subscribe to the Blog (http://ucanr.edu/blogs/CCMGBlog/)./span>/b>