It's been years since I seen these. I saw a bit about them in this month's Harrowsmith and I think I'd like to try them. Has anyone grown ground cherries before?
I usually grow ground cherries and I usually make the mistake of growing too many. They are very prolific-- one plant will overwhelm you with fruit.
The culture is like tomatoes, but you don't need to prune them. Just let them run. The bushes get only about 2 or 3 feet tall, but they are sprawling. The fruits are like california-sized blueberries, and they turn yellow when ripe. You won't see the colour until you take off the loose papery coverings.
When the fruits ripen they drop to the ground. Being encased in husks, they can stay on the ground until you're ready to pick them, or the husks start withering away.
I've not had problems with critters eating them, but then again we have lots of other great critter food around here, so they have little incentive to vary to their current diet.
Ground cherries make excellent additions to salads. They make a nice sweet additions to chutneys and savory sauces. My husbands puts them in soup.
Overall it's an easy, productive plant if you have the room for it.
I can spare some seeds if you just want a few-- say half a dozen.
Thank you for the info Bev! SO, they're sort of like tomatoes in their uses?
I have found some seeds from another trader, but thank you for the offer.
Maybe next year I'll be able to add them to my list of seeds!
OOPS! I just somehow lost my post, so if this shows up twice, please forgive me. :)
I have just ordered some ground cherry seeds froom Vesey's--'Aunt Molly' and it says that they are very sweet and taste a bit like pineapples. Can be used in preserves, pies or over icecream but also delicious raw.
I see that you have already got the seeds, but if you would like, I could share the pie recipe that comes with the seeds.
Your Aunt Molly is a great grower as I had some last year and they are very aggressive in our climate here at Saskatoon.
Prairie Seeds has several other related Family members which I grew and they did well except I got the seeds too late. The site is linked from my blog.
Here is a link that might be useful: My Blog
They do have a very interesting if not aquired taste. It tastes like a cross between a tomato and a pineapple. They grew ok for me outdoors, but not great. I planted one indoors tho and it produced for about 6 months strait =)