Ground cherry

‘Love-in-a-cage’ - is this flower called in French!
Common name : Ground cherry
Scientific name : Physalis alkekengi
Family : Solanaceae
Category : Perennials
Type of plant : Perennial
Edible
Edible
Flowery
Flowery
Invader
Invader
Physalis - the groundcherry - is a genus of 75-90 species in the nightshade family Solanaceae, native to warm temperate and subtropical regions of the world, mostly the Americas, and cultivated species and weedy annuals have been introduced worldwide. Physalis are herbaceous either annuals or perennials, growing to 0.4 to 3 m tall and resembles a tomato plant with a stiffer, more upright stem, forming a large papery husk derived from the calyx, which partly or fully encloses the small and orange fruit, similar in size to a cherry tomato. Some species are sensitive to frost, but others, such as the Chinese lantern, P. alkekengi, tolerate severe cold when dormant in winter.

Sowing & planting

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Flowering

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Harvestint

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Caracteristics

Exposition
Water needs
Granulométrie plants.granulometry_4
Frost-resistance Medium
Zone USDA 8a
Height 50 - 60
pH 6 - 7

Identify my ground cherry

Ground cherry have oval leaves, at the end of a petiole, and end in tips. The plant is downy, erect, and bears white or cream flowers as early as May.

Sow my ground cherry

Inside: Sow at the end of March under cover, above 16 ° C, every 3 cm / 1 inch, buried lightly, in bucket in a draining mix of fine compost, earth and sand. Outside: Sow from mid-May in place, above 16 ° C, every 3 cm / 1 inch, buried slightly. Physalis likes light in a moderately rich and drained soil.

Dibble my ground cherry

Transplant in the garden after frosts, in neutral, rich, rather dry soil, in the sun. Space the plants by a meter or more, because they will expand a lot. Work the soil simply, breaking it down with a pitchfork, then scratching the clods on the top. Plant with a dibble, then pack the root ball well, and water.

Plant my ground cherry

Plant after frost, in neutral, rich, rather dry soil, in the sun. Space the feet by a meter/4 feet or more, because they will expand a lot. Work the soil simply, breaking it down with a fork, then scratch the clods on the top of the soil. Plant with a dibble, then tamp the ground well, and water.

Water my ground cherry

Water during the summer season, once a week in case of dry weather, in the morning if possible. Water also during first month after planting, twice a week.

Fertilize my ground cherry

With a respectful approach to soil life, it's always better to fertilize a little in advance with organic material that will decompose; spread out a compost that isn't entirely decomposed, with well decomposed manure at the plant's base, and incorporate over 10 cm with a hoe. This operation is carried out in winter so that earthworms and bacteria have enough time to do their job.

Repot my ground cherry

One month after sowing under cover, repot in a pot or a bucket under cover, in a draining mix of fine compost, soil and sand.

Mulch my ground cherry

Mulch the ground cherry, it will save you the hassle of watering too much, weeding too - and it will protect it when the frosts come.

Reap my ground cherry

From mid-September physalis can be harvested: they are fruits used in cooking, or to replace candies. Place a blanket at the foot, then shake the plant reasonably without breaking the branches or pulling on the remaining fruit. If the fruit has a grayish color it is spoiled: keep only those of light beige color.

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