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Clear Mountain Garden TreasuresCape Gooseberry

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Cape Gooseberry

Ripe Fruit

Ripe fruit is golden yellow with brown, paper-like calyx.
Family Solanaceae
Name Physalis peruviana
Common Names Cape gooseberry, Ground cherry

  See also:  Food plants, Trees & shrubs, Culture / Germination

Cape gooseberry is an unusual plant. Despite its name, it does not come from Cape and it is not a gooseberry (Ribes spp.). Instead, it comes from South America and is related to Chinese lanterns (Physalis alkekengi).

The fruits taste like a cross between a gooseberry, a tomato and a cherry! Well ripen fruits are very sweet, with a slight tang, but unripe fruit is poisonous. Like a Chinese lantern, the fruit is encased in the calyx, except that in cape gooseberries, the calys is green and not colourful. The calyx turns yellow, then brown when the fruit is ready.



Flower

The small flowers hang down and are wind pollinated.

Unripe Fruit

The unripe fruit is green and poisonous.

Fruiting Stem

Leaves

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