Physalis hederaefolia cordifolia
Herb: Ground Cherry
Latin name: Physalis hederaefolia cordifolia
Synonyms: Physalis fendleri, Physalis hederaefolia fendleri
Family: Solanaceae (Nightshade Family, Potato Family)
Edible parts of Ground Cherry:Edible fruit - raw or cooked. The fruit can also be boiled in a small amount of water, crushed and used as a condiment. The plant conveniently wraps up each fruit in its own "paper bag" (botanically, the calyx) to protect it from pests and the elements. This calyx is toxic and should not be eaten.
Description of the plant:
(11 3/4 inch)
Habitat of the herb:Dry rocky and gravelly places, 1000 - 1600 metres in California.
Propagation of Ground Cherry:Seed - sow March/April in a greenhouse only just covering the seed. Germination usually takes place quickly and freely. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots of fairly rich soil when they are large enough to handle and plant them out after the last expected frosts. Consider giving them some protection such as a cloche until they are growing away well. Diurnal temperature fluctuations assist germination. Division in spring. Very easy, larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. We have found that it is better to pot up the smaller divisions and grow them on in light shade in a cold frame until they are well established before planting them out in late spring or early summer. Basal cuttings in early summer. Harvest the shoots with plenty of underground stem when they are about 8 - 10cm above the ground. Pot them up into individual pots and keep them in light shade in a cold frame or greenhouse until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the summer.
Cultivation of the herb:Dry rocky and gravelly places, 1000 - 1600 metres in California.
Medicinal use of Ground Cherry:None known
Known hazards of Physalis hederaefolia cordifolia:Although no specific mention has been seen for this species, it belongs to a genus where many of the members have poisonous leaves and stems, though the full ripe fruits are usually edible.
Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.