How To Spot An Overwatered Tomato Plant

What Happens When Overwatering Spotting An Overwatered PlantCommon SignsAvoiding OverwateringWilting PlantsSaving A Tomato PlantTomato Plants In PotsFAQ

Tomato plants can just like any other plant also become overwatered. But fortunately we can pretty easily spot whether it has been overwatered or not. This is really worthwhile information to know since if a plant is left over watered for too long then you will risk killing the tomato plant.

Below we will start talking about spotting an overwatered tomato plant, all from looking at the leaves, the stem and the soil too. These are where we will best see if there might be an issue.

Tomato Seedlings
Tomato Seedlings

What Happens When A Plant Is Overwatered

When a tomato plant gets overwatered then there is too much water in the soil, obviously. But what is actually happening is that the water is blocking out oxygen from reaching the roots. That then causes them to start drowning and no longer able to take up nutrient from the soil.

This process can be pretty quick so it’s important to know the proper watering routine for tomato plants to never even have to face these issues. Choosing the right soil can also help prevent overwatering. If the soil has good drainage then that will help lead the excess water away from the roots.

How To Spot An Overwatered Tomato Plant

Let’s talk about the reason you came to this article, being able to spot when a tomato plant has been overwatered. We look at both the leaves, stem and the soil for the plant.

The leaves can start curling, wrinkling or even turning yellow in color when the plant is overwatered. When the issue has gone too far, then the plant will instead begin to have black spots appearing on the leaves too. At this point it’s pretty hard to save the plant.

The stem might be one of the first things to start looking at. The stem is where all the water is traveling through in the plant. When the roots no longer are transporting any nutrition or water into the rest of the plant, the stem will begin to turn black. It’s a process where the plant begins decomposing and turning back into soil.

The soil is also important to look at. If it’s like a sludgy paste then there is definitely too much water in the soil. Try and aim for it to be slightly damp or just below that in moisture content. Of course it will differ a little bit between tomato plants, but that is a good guideline to follow.

Common Signs Of Overwatered Tomato Plants

There are a lot of common signs that a tomato plant has been overwatered. Let’s take a closer look at these signs.

Yellowing Leaves

When the leaves are beginning to turn yellow on the tomato plant then that is normally a pretty early sign that the soil has too much water in it. This can best be fixed by avoiding watering the soil for a few days at least.

Black Spots On The Stem

If there are black spots beginning to appear on the stem then the roots have started drowning from the overwatering. Holding off on watering for quite a few days would be a very good idea here. 

Bad Smells From The Soil

If the soil starts smelling bad, then that could be because the roots have been rotting and are currently decomposing. These are really serious issues as roots not getting energy will cause the rest of the plant to die off eventually.

Leaves Hanging Or Rolling Up

Just like the leaves turning yellow, if they are starting to hang or roll up then it could also be because of the soil being overwatered. It’s an early sign so you should try and hold off on the watering for at least a few days to give the plant a bit of rest.

Tomato Plant
Tomato Plant

How To Avoid Overwatering A Tomato Plant

Keeping a schedule or routine at least when watering tomato plants is a great way of preventing ever overwatering the plant. We try to check up on the plant at least every other day or so. You might not have to water all the time either. Trying to keep the soil slightly damp at the top level will be the ideal condition for the plant. Unless it’s dryer then that, then you shouldn’t really water the soil.

Common Causes For A Wilting Plant

When a plant starts wilting there can be various causes. But some are more common than others. If a plant has been overwatered then that causes stress and eventually a wilting plant.

Too much sunlight also has the possibility of stressing the plant enough to the point where it’s starting to wilt.

Saving An Overwatered Tomato Plant

Whether or not you can save an overwatered tomato plant will really be about how long it has come. If it’s early on and the leaves are turning in color to a more yellow tone, then you can hold off on watering for a few days to give the plant some rest.

If you are growing it in a pot then moving it to a sunnier spot might be a very good idea. That should hopefully help the soil dry out a bit more quickly.

Overwatering Tomato Plants In Pots

If you are using a pot to grow a tomato plant, then we can’t stress enough how great one with holes in the bottom are. These help lead away any excess water from the roots. It’s a real life save and the risk of over watering a tomato  plant is very small when using one of these.

Tomato Plant
Tomato Plant


Can A Tomato Plant Recover From Overwatering

A tomato plant can definitely recover from overwatering. If you hold off on adding any more to the soil then that will give the plant some time to recover and come back to life.

What Do You Do With Waterlogged Tomato Plants

If a tomato plant has been waterlogged then you should leave it in a sunnier spot. That will hopefully give the plant some time to rest up. The soil will also dry out more quickly, reducing the amount of water there.

What Do Tomato Leaves Look Like When Overwatered

If you have overwatered a tomato plant then the leaves will begin to change. They could turn yellow or even black. But they might also start to wrinkle and curl up.

Additional Information

Read more articles about Tomatoes

Search For More Information