Tomato Plants Turning Purple – Understanding the Causes and Solutions

Tomato plants can turn purple due to a phosphorus deficiency or exposure to cold temperatures. Purple tinted tomato plants can be a cause for concern for many gardeners.

While purple is a natural colour for some tomato varieties, it can also indicate a problem. If your tomato plants are turning purple, it is most likely due to either a phosphorus deficiency or exposure to cold temperatures. Phosphorus is an essential nutrient that aids in plant growth and development. A lack of phosphorus can result in slow growth and purple leaves and stems. Meanwhile, exposure to cold temperatures can cause purple spots and leaves on tomato plants. To prevent this problem, ensure your tomato plants have adequate phosphorus and are not exposed to cold temperatures.

Tomato Plants Turning Purple - Understanding the Causes and Solutions


Understanding The Causes Of Tomato Plants Turning Purple

Tomato plants turning purple can be a concern for any gardener. In most cases, the main culprit is nutrient deficiencies, particularly phosphorus. Sometimes, insect infestations and diseases like tomato mosaic virus can cause the discoloration. It can also be due to environmental factors such as high humidity, cold temperature, or overexposure to sunlight.

Insufficient watering or overwatering can also lead to purple leaves. In these cases, it’s best to adjust the watering and nutrient levels. However, in some extreme cases, it may be necessary to get rid of the plants. Keeping an eye on the plants closely and addressing symptoms as they arise can help prevent this issue from arising in the first place.

Identifying Symptoms Of Purple Tomato Plants

Tomato plants turning purple can be a concerning issue for gardeners. Look for specific visual changes such as purple leaves, stems, or fruit. Discoloration may be a sign of a nutrient deficiency or disease. Check the ph level of the soil and ensure it is between 6.

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0-7. 0 for optimal growth. A magnesium deficiency could also cause purple leaves, so consider adding epsom salt to the soil. Alternatively, it could be due to environmental factors such as cold temperatures or excessive amounts of sunlight. Treat the issue promptly to avoid stunted growth or fruit production.

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Preventing And Treating Purple Tomato Plants

Purple tomato plants can be caused by nutrient deficiencies, such as phosphorus or magnesium. Soil amendments and fertilizers can help alleviate these issues. Additionally, pests like aphids or diseases like verticillium wilt can also cause discoloration. Using insecticides or fungicides appropriately can treat these problems.

Finally, environmental stressors like temperature or moisture imbalances can lead to purple leaves. Adjusting these factors can help reduce plant stress and maintain healthy tomatoes. By taking a proactive approach to preventing and treating purple tomato plants, gardeners can ensure a bountiful harvest of vibrant, tasty tomatoes.


Purple tomatoes occur when there is an imbalance of nutrients in the plant’s system or when the plant is exposed to environmental stress factors. The discoloration occurs when the pigments that give the tomato their red color break down, leading to a purplish hue.

The good news is that purple tomatoes are still perfectly safe to eat and retain all of the nutritional benefits of their red counterparts. Preventing purple tomatoes requires close attention to the soil’s ph levels, proper watering techniques, and avoiding planting tomatoes in areas with high stress factors.

By following these tips and staying vigilant, you can ensure that your tomatoes grow strong, healthy, and with the perfect shade of red. Happy gardening!