Physalis philadelphica  • 

Photo: Tomatillo

General description

A plant of the nightshade family, related to the cape gooseberry, bearing small, spherical and green or green-purple fruit

Plant requirements

Two or more plants are needed for proper pollination.  Fruit rarely sets on isolated plants.


Tomatillos prefer a somewhat neutral soil pH, around 6.5--7.0, but for the most part, they will grow anywhere there is heat, sunshine and regular water. Tomatillos are generally grown as annuals. They will reseed, if left on the ground. In the U.S. they typically grow in zones 9 - 11.

Practical use

Tomatillos are the key ingredient in fresh and cooked Latin American green sauces. The freshness and greenness of the papery husk are quality criteria. Fruit should be firm and bright green, as the green color and tart flavour are the main culinary contributions of the fruit.


0 - 1000 cm