Q. We have six tomato plants in half whiskey barrel-size containers. They looked to be doing great with large fruit moving to ripening, but now I see one of the plants is loaded with spider mites. Is there an effective way to treat the spider mites and maximize tomato production?

A. The best treatment plan may be to harvest all the fruit on the spider mite infested plant and then pull the plant out of the garden. The idea is to give the plants as much time as possible before they become overrun with spider mites. Be careful when you pull the infested plant not to spread the spider mites all over the less infected plants. Put the infested plant in a garbage bag and into the garbage. 

Calvin Finch is a retired horticulture agent in Bexar County. He writes for and works with a number of area media outlets.

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