Also known as ground
cherries or cape gooseberries
fruits are the smaller cousin of the tomatillo.
These tiny yellow and pale orange fruits are about the size of a cherry
(about 1/2″ diameter) and come wrapped in a delicate
The skin of this tomato is smooth and taught, like a cherry
tomato, but the juicy flesh has a hint of citrus, pineapple
mango in its sweet taste. The consistency is the same as a tomato.
Often used in salads.
grows on a small vine. When ripe, the
husk turns brown and the fruit drops from the plant. If left in the
husk, it will keep for several weeks.
The husk cherry tomato has a pleasing and distinctive flavor and is
in cocktails, salads, or as dessert. Its most common use is in jam, but
frequently used in pies or as a cooked sauce on cakes and puddings.
The husk cherry tomato is a member of the genus Physalis,
agroup of herbaceous
plants belonging to the solanaceae
(nightshade) family, related to tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants.
The husk cherry tomato, Physalis
pruinosa, grows from 18 to 30
inches tall with oval or
heart-shaped fuzzy leaves. The buff-yellow flowers are marked on the
inside with five brown spots. Its greenish-yellow fruit, about the size
of a cherry tomato, is produced inside a papery husk.
Plant growth and culture is much the same as tomatoes.
indoors or in a greenhouse, then transplant 6-week-old seedlings to the
garden a week or two after the average date of the last spring freeze.
Like tomatoes, they respond well in ordinary well-drained garden soil
in a sunny location. Set plants 2 to 3 feet apart. They have few
insects or diseases and no physiological peculiarities. The fruits
begin to mature from mid to late summer, about the same time as late
Sources: University of
Minnesota Extension Service