tomatillo and ground cherry

wiringman(ZONE 4)July 27, 2010

This year i traded for some Pineapple Tomatillo and Ground Cherry seed.

When the plants got to me from our green house they we all labeled PT.

However some of the plants have growing habits like Tomatilo's and some are ground hugers. They both are husk tomatoes if calling a tiomatillo a tomato is right.

I have grown green Tomatillo's before but never Ground Cherry's.

Any info would be a help.


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Tomatillos are basically cultivated varieties of ground cherries. There are a few different species of ground cherries however. You should notice the difference between the two types you have by the size of the fruit - ground cherries usually only get about 1/2 to 3/4 inch wide with 1-inch wide husks.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2010 at 11:12AM
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spaghetina(SF Bay Area)

When I first planted out my pineapple tomatillos, they were standing upright, like a regular green tomatillo does. Once they became a bit more established, they splayed out, and are now spilling out over the sides of their containers, looking like lovely creeping plants. How old, and how large are your plants?

I think the pineapple tomatillos and ground cherries all eventually sort of fall over and become ground cover-y when they get large enough.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2010 at 11:37AM
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I grew ground cherries last year and they tended to sprawl; I guess you could cage them if you wanted but they seem to like to sprawl about. The ground cherries should only be the size of a cherry or smaller. Also I found that they seem to need hotter weather than tomatoes do, but I suppose that will vary per experience.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2010 at 1:20PM
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wiringman(ZONE 4)

well first of all i trellis most of my tomatoes so they will be off the ground and be easier to harvest.

the ones i think are PT's are 4 or four time as tall and the others are short and close to the ground.

the PT's have larger husks.

we try to be very careful with our seed and how we mark our plants and for the most part we get it right.

we are on our 5th generation with our Russian Rose and our Anna Russian tomatoes.

we however can not tell the difference between the Aker's West Virginia and the Goliath.

these plants are 2 months from transplant.

i will try to get pictures tomorrow.


    Bookmark   July 28, 2010 at 9:45PM
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spaghetina(SF Bay Area)

My pineapple tomatillos have very small husks. The largest ones are only around the size of a nickel, maybe smaller. Many are dime-sized, and the fruits are correspondingly small. The plants are started at around a foot tall, and now they've spread out to be several feet wide.

I would be willing to bet that the ground cherries are the larger of the two, since that seems to be the kind of physalis with fruit that gets sold in baskets in places like Canada, and they look kind of like Sungold cherry tomatoes in size and color (when dead ripe, anyway). Pineapple tomatillos are tiny.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2010 at 2:57AM
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chesnok(z6 AR)

I grew the ground cherry "Pineapple Tomatillo" a few years ago. They were as spaghetina described. It was an erect bush plant, about 2-3 feet tall and about 3 feet wide. Fruits were 1-1.5 inches across, yellow, and tasted sort of like strawberry crossed with pineapple. The fruits fell off when ripe, but did not break the husks as tomatillos often do.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2010 at 5:18AM
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Read this article:

Here is a link that might be useful: Tomatillo Growing and Cooking

    Bookmark   July 29, 2010 at 8:36PM
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