Black patches on tomato and pepper plants

I bought tomato and pepper plants already started 3 weeks ago from same store. They were thriving. About a week later, the tomato plants started having black patchy areas throughout stem, scattered, and here and there on some of the leaves. This seemed to progress until the area is dead. I started trimming the areas as they were produced. Now (2 wks later), the pepper plants are starting to have black areas on the joints of the stem. I heard virus for tomato plants in area? What about pepper pl?
Submitted by BHGPhotoContest

"Hi,

Thanks for writing. Without being able to see your plants, I'm afraid I can't diagnose the problems for sure. There are several diseases that can affect tomato and pepper stems (the plants are closely related). Your best bet is to bring a sample to the folks at your local cooperative extension office or university; they should be able to help identify it after examining it in person.

There are some fungicides that may stop the disease from spreading much farther --- but it's really helpful to know what you're dealing with before spraying.

---Justin, Senior Garden Editor, BHG.com "


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