How to Manage Pests

UC Pest Management Guidelines


Crop Rotation

(Reviewed 1/08, updated 1/08)

In this Guideline

Avoid planting tomatoes in the same field year after year. Rotating to a nonhost crop can significantly reduce pest populations in the field. The table below provides information on nonhost crops that interrupt certain tomato-associated pathogen, nematode, and weed cycles.

If your field is infested with nematodes or pathogens listed in the table below, consider choosing a listed nonhost crop. Although longer nonhost crop rotations are ideal, they often are not economically feasible. A rotation of lesser duration is still beneficial, but to a lesser degree. In general, avoid solanaceous crops as rotation choices.

For winter annual weed control, choose wheat or small grains and control these weeds with a suitable herbicide. Manage summer annual weeds by growing a corn rotation and using selective herbicides and cultivations.

Volunteer tomato plants and other nightshades around the field edges of a rotation crop will perpetuate nematode populations. If your field has a history of nematodes, be sure to destroy all volunteer tomatoes.

Pest type Suggested rotation cycle in years Nonhost crop options and other comments
Verticillium wilt 3 Small grains, corn
Phytophthora root rot 1 Cereals for severe infestations
Bacterial spot 1 or more Nonsolanaceous crops
Bacterial canker 1 or more Nonsolanaceous crops
Fusarium 2 or more Crops other than tomato
Southern blight 3 Small grains
Corky root rot 2 or more Small grains, corn
Root knot nematode Use resistant tomato varieties and other nonhosts
Weeds 1 or more See special weed problems
Dodder Use resistant tomato varieties


[UC Peer Reviewed]

UC IPM Pest Management Guidelines: Tomato
UC ANR Publication 3470

General Information

R. M. Davis, Plant Pathology, UC Davis

Top of page

Statewide IPM Program, Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California
All contents copyright © 2014 The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

For noncommercial purposes only, any Web site may link directly to this page. FOR ALL OTHER USES or more information, read Legal Notices. Unfortunately, we cannot provide individual solutions to specific pest problems. See our Home page, or in the U.S., contact your local Cooperative Extension office for assistance.

Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California

Accessibility   /PMG/r783900611.html revised: April 25, 2014. Contact webmaster.