As you can see from the picture below some of the leaves on my tomatoes were showing the tell tale signs of alternaria solarni or early blight. Are you impressed? I looked it up to make myself sound clever.
I knew it was a mildewy thingy because there is a lot of it going around. I didn't want to use a fungicide. Only the lower leaves were affected so I took them off and put them in the bin. I top dressed the tomatoes with some very old chicken poo and compost. Tomorrow I will mulch them.
Now my tomatoes have lovely long legs to keep their skirts up off the ground.
I will also be very careful not to wet the leaves when watering.
Only the Gross Lisse were suffering from this problem. The Mortgage Busters, and other Heirloom varieties were fine.
Something that worked well.
Macrame in the Veggie Patch.
In these photos you can see how the tomatoes have grown up through the strips cut from an old wind-cheater. It has been pretty automatic.
Occasionally I have pushed a stem to one side or the other as they wove upward.
In some places I have twisted the cord around the stem where the material was loose enough.
I would highly recommend this method of imposing one's will on tomatoes.