Physalis pubescens is a plant native to the Americas that is part of the nightshade family. It is cultivated like tomato but no diseases nor parasites affecting it are known, which makes it an easy culture. Its delicious fruit with an exotic taste has the size of an orange cherry and can be kept for up to several weeks, sheltered in its sheath, which is at the origin of the scientific name of the plant − derived from the Greek and meaning bladder. This plant has many other names: husk tomato, ground-cherry, tomatillo. There are many varieties.
I discovered this species with a local vegetable grower while I was cultivating out of curiosity another variety of physalis (ixocarpa or philadelphica) − its more bitter fruit requires processing (jam, sauce) for optimal consumption. The fruit of physalis pubescens is tasty and it is for this reason that I am growing this variety. It can be grown in the ground but also in pots. This plant seems to be able to endure the winter and regrow in the spring if it is sheltered from the cold (sunny terrace, greenhouse, veranda). Just like tomato, physalis is sown in a sheltered place at the end of winter before being planted in the ground when there is no risk of frost anymore, or in a container in a sheltered and well lighted spot.