Cutting Tomato Leaves to Produce More Fruit — 15 Comments

  1. The suggestion to compost the leaves or use them as mulch is not a good one since it will propagate tomato diseases.

  2. The leaves provide the plant with essential nutrients through photosynthesis. They do not just supply the plant with shade…

    • That’s actually not correct. Photosynthesis does not provide any nutrients. The plant gets the nutrients from the water it absorbs thru the roots and leaves.
      Photosynthesis is when the plant harvests energy from the Sun to use the nutrients to grow.

  3. Several statements in this video are incorrect.
    First, the leaves are not present to provide shade as one commentter stated.
    Second, leaves perform photosynthesis which is the biochemical process of generating energy from sunlight for the plant. Tomato plants require photosynthesis – without it, they die.
    Third, removing the (discolored) leaves helps to reduce growth of diseases (blights) which affect ALL tomato varieties. Hence, removing the leaves slows the onset of diseases during the growing season.
    Fourth, composting or using the cut leaves as mulch is NOT a good idea as the process recycles any diseases back into the soil – so next season’s plants will have a much more difficult time. Composting is possible ONLY if it guaranteed to get hot such that the diseased fungal spores are killed.

  4. After reading a few articles about pinching suckers from tomatoes, I suggest not using scissors or nippers for removing the leaves; if the leaves are diseased, the scissors can carry that disease from one plant to another. Those articles suggest pinching out the suckers, so I suggest you can take the leaves off with your fingers.

    And I agree those diseased leaves should not be composted. Put them in the garbage!

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