Some botanists unite this species with Physalis philadelphica[
], saying that it arose from Physalis philadelphica through cultivation.
Common Name: Tomatillo
Tomatillo is an annual plant growing about 1.2 metres tall.
The plant is sometimes cultivated for its edible fruit.
All parts of the plant, except the fruit, are poisonous[
Central America and north through N. America as far as southern Quebec.
|Cultivation Status||Cultivated, Wild
Succeeds in any well-drained soil in full sun or light shade[
]. Prefers a rich light soil[
]. Tolerates hot dry weather[
A slow growing plant[
]. Insect resistant[
Fruit - raw or cooked[
]. The fruit is a berry that is 2.5cm or more in diameter[
]. When not fully ripe, the fruit can be cooked and used in curries, sauces, soups, stews etc[
]. A delicious flavouring when used like a tomato and added to soups, stews etc[
]. The fully ripe fruit is sweeter and can be eaten out of hand, added to salads or used in pies, preserves etc[
]. The plant conveniently wraps up each fruit in its own 'paper bag' (botanically, the calyx) to protect it from pests and the elements. This calyx is toxic and should not be eaten. The fruit can be stored for up to a year if picked before they are fully ripe and left inside their calyx.
Seed - sow in situ. Germination is usually quick and free. Diurnal temperature fluctuations assist germination with daytime temperatures of 30°c falling to 21°c at night[
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