Growing Cape Gooseberry, also Golden Berry, Inca Berry

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
                  P P P

(Best months for growing Cape Gooseberry in New Zealand - cool/mountain regions)

P = Sow seed

  • Easy to grow. Sow in garden. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 50°F and 77°F. (Show °C/cm)
  • Space plants: 39 - 59 inches apart
  • Harvest in 14-16 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Will happily grow in a flower border but tends to sprawl over other plants.
  • Cape Gooseberry plant
  • Flowers
  • unripe fruit

A straggling bush up to one metre tall that bears yellow fruits inside a brown papery envelope. It is perennial. The cape gooseberry is related to tomatillo, ground cherry and husk tomato, all in the genus Physalis.

Cape Gooseberry is very easy to grow and as the fruit are popular with birds the plants can be easily spread around the garden. If you have plenty of room then plants grow better with 1.5m of space. Spacing closer works but you may get less fruit.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Cape Gooseberry

The berry is the size of a cherry tomato, is very aromatic and full of tiny seeds. They are delicious eaten fresh or can be made into jam. They can be added to salads, desserts and cooked dishes, they are delicious stewed with other fruit, especially apples. They also go well in savoury dishes with meat or seafood. Can be preserved dried as 'Inca Berries'

Your comments and tips

31 Jul 20, (USA - Zone 4a climate)
We live just outside Portland Or. does anyone know what client zone that is? Gardenate reply - Have you checked here /www.gardenate.com/zones/#zone-US ?
18 Jul 20, Brad (Australia - temperate climate)
If you're growing cape gooseberry through these colder winter months, keep an eye on the developing calyx (outer shell) around the fruit and make sure the flower petal has fully detached from the calyx. Sometimes the flower will get trapped in the end of the calyx and will develop mould, which might eventually lead to necrosis of the calyx itself and the developing fruit. Most times you can just gently tap the calyx to free the flower, but sometimes you may need to gently pry it with your fingertips.
06 Jul 20, Miri (Australia - temperate climate)
How long do cape gooseberry live for?
07 Jul 20, Anon (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
It is perennial so will grow for a few years.
07 Jul 20, Astrid (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
If well taken care of, more than 20 years.
29 Jun 20, Paul (New Zealand - temperate climate)
Can a Cape Gooseberry be grown in a Hanging Basket situation ?
30 Jun 20, Anonymous (New Zealand - temperate climate)
You could try it. I would think a big hanging basket would be needed. Would need constant attention as the plant can grow to 1-1.5m and that size would need a lot of water each day.
20 Jun 20, Harvey Youssef (USA - Zone 7a climate)
Will the plants survive the winter in Virginia (zone 7)?
28 May 20, Reda Soliman (USA - Zone 5b climate)
Can I plant golden gooseberry fruit at Illinois ZIP Code 60007
28 May 20, Liz (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
Have a look at this page www.gardenate.com/plant/Cape Gooseberry?zone=14
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