August 2, 2017 7:31 AM   Subscribe

A lot of my tomatoes, from several different varieties, all have these weird bullseye splotches on them. What is it?

I have put a lot of time into online tomato disease archives (and boy, are there a ton of those), but I haven't seen anything similar, except perhaps the dreaded tomato spotted wilt virus, which isn't really similar at all. None of my tomatoes get so patchy. They don't rot. I'm inclined to think it has something to do with being overripe. The riper the tomato, the more bullseyes it will have, although not all of the tomatoes will have them, not even ones from the same plant. Also, you can't feel them, they seem totally superficial.

The plants themselves are doing somewhat poorly, losing a lot of leaves, but they have nice bushy growth at the top are are still setting fruit.

Am I right, is it linked to ripeness? Is it spotted wilt? And it wouldn't be AskMe if I didn't ask: can I eat it?
posted by lollymccatburglar to Home & Garden (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I had to look twice at your photos before my brain registered the splotches. To me they look like they might be marks left from drops of water evaporating. Are they on what was the lower parts of the tomato when it was hanging on the vine? Did the tomatoes get sprayed with water recently?

I would totally eat them.
posted by heatherlogan at 7:36 AM on August 2, 2017

Could be a minor case of anthracnose? Not unsafe for humans but can be devastating to growers.
posted by Knicke at 7:58 AM on August 2, 2017

Ours get similar-looking marks from the hard water we use in our greenhouse. The marks rub off with a little clean water. Maybe that's all it is.
posted by pipeski at 8:35 AM on August 2, 2017

Concentric rings on the fruit and leaves is the hallmark of tomato spotted wilt virus.
posted by drlith at 9:06 AM on August 2, 2017 [2 favorites]

It's hard to tell what it might be without more pictures, or seeing the texture of the spots. There are a ton of diseases and the symptoms can be a) hard to tell apart b) hard to discern in early stages.

Regardless, you can eat it, yes. Cut off any bits that seem rotted or unpleasant, but otherwise it won't hurt you a bit.
posted by desuetude at 10:36 AM on August 2, 2017

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