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Cape gooseberry or physalis produces sweet orange fruits in a husk. The fruit is very much like a cherry tomato in appearance. The fruits are really tasty, excellent in jams or eaten raw. Harvest when the husk changes colour from green to brown. The plants grow up to 180 cm tall, best grown in the greenhouse as the plants are heat loving. Needs similar conditions as tomatoes. Very tasty, sweet fruits.
Sow the Cape Gooseberry seeds about 1 cm deep into a seed tray or in small pots or cells, covered lightly, watered and placed at between 20-24 Celsius on a windowsill, heated greenhouse or propagator. Sow from late February - April. Germination takes about 10 days.
As soon as the physalis seedlings are large enough to handle, prick out. Transplant the seedlings into individual small pots, later on they might need to be repotted if growing quickly and large. Make sure the leaves do not overlap. Temperature during this stage should be around 16 Celsius. Plant outside mid-May-June 80x60 cm, or keep in the greenhouse.
Keep watering in dry spells, especially when flowering and when the fruit is setting.Some side shoot removal might be necessary as the plants can grow really tall and bushy.