Plant DetailShow Menu

Mexican Husk Tomato Physalis philadelphica

Description

The tomatillo is a tomato-like vegetable in the Solanaceae (nightshade) family native to the southern US and Central America.  The round, green fruits have a tart flavor and are used raw, cooked, or dried. 

These easy to grow interment plants grow to 3 to 4 feet in height and width and they produce fruits until the first frost. Plant them in full sun in moist, rich, well drained garden soil as transplants after the threat of frost in the late spring.  They do not do well in heavy, wet, clay soils so plant them in raised beds or containers if necessary. Tomatillo plants are not great at self-pollinating so planting more than one will result in better fruit set.   Each plant will produce around 2 to 3 pounts of fruits and they will be ready for harvest about 60 to 75 days from transplanting.  They tend to sprawl and may need some support like a tomato cage or trellis otherwise stems that touch the ground will root.  Tomatillos are relatively drought tolerant.

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  Few insect or disease problems.  

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Pineapple'
    Short plant fruits taste like pineapple
  • 'Purple Coban'
    Purple fuits
  • 'Purple De Milpa'
    Purple stiped husks, strong flavored fruits
  • 'Rendidora'
    Green fruit, high yield, erect growth
  • 'Toma Verde'
    Green fruits, tart-sweet flavor, vining habit, prolific
'Pineapple', 'Purple Coban', 'Purple De Milpa', 'Rendidora', 'Toma Verde'
Tags:
#drought tolerant#edible plant#easy to grow#vegetable garden#green fruits#edible fruits#vegetable#purple fruits#raised beds#container vegetable garden#warm season vegetable#container plants
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Pineapple'
    Short plant fruits taste like pineapple
  • 'Purple Coban'
    Purple fuits
  • 'Purple De Milpa'
    Purple stiped husks, strong flavored fruits
  • 'Rendidora'
    Green fruit, high yield, erect growth
  • 'Toma Verde'
    Green fruits, tart-sweet flavor, vining habit, prolific
'Pineapple', 'Purple Coban', 'Purple De Milpa', 'Rendidora', 'Toma Verde'
Tags:
#drought tolerant#edible plant#easy to grow#vegetable garden#green fruits#edible fruits#vegetable#purple fruits#raised beds#container vegetable garden#warm season vegetable#container plants
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Physalis
    Species:
    philadelphica
    Family:
    Solanaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Annual
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    southern US and Central America
    Wildlife Value:
    Bees and other pollinators fertilize the flowers.
    Edibility:
    Fruits are edible and can be eaten whole with no need to peel core or seed. They can be used for salsa, soups, stews, and meat dishes.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 3 ft. 0 in. - 4 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 3 ft. 0 in. - 4 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Edible
    Vegetable
    Growth Rate:
    Rapid
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Soil Texture:
    High Organic Matter
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Available Space To Plant:
    3 feet-6 feet
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Green
    Purple/Lavender
    Fruit Value To Gardener:
    Edible
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Summer
    Fruit Type:
    Berry
    Fruit Length:
    1-3 inches
    Fruit Width:
    1-3 inches
    Fruit Description:
    Round, 1 to 2 inch green or purple berries enclosed in a papery husk have a citrus flavor. They are ripe when they are still firm but fill the husk. Green varieties will turn a yellow green when ripe and purple varieties will turn from green to purple.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Solitary
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Star
    Flower Petals:
    fused petals
    Flower Description:
    Solitary, yellow star shaped fused petaled flowers are green or dark in the center. Their petals can extend backward as they mature and they hang downward in the axils of leaves.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Margin:
    Dentate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Description:
    Simple alternate leaves with a toothed margin. Resemble eggplant leaves.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Landscape Theme:
    Edible Garden
    Attracts:
    Bees