AUNT MOLLY'S GROUND CHERRY (Physalis pruinosa) date to at least 1837 when they were first recorded in Pennsylvania. This is a Polish heirloom that produces 1/2"-3/4" fruits with a clean, citrusy flavor. The fruit is contained in papery husk that indicates ripe fruit by turning brown. The neat thing is, you don't have to process immediately if you pick with husks intact as they will store in their husks 3-4 weeks. Very productive plants have a rangy growth up to 60" H x 24" wide. High in pectin (which can moderate blood sugars and cholesterol), great for use in preserves and marmalade, pies, sauces or fruit salads and even dried. Will not cross with other cherries or fruit, as it is actually related to the tomatillo. 70 days. 50 Seeds.
GROWING TIPS: Sow indoors 1/4" deep 6 weeks before last frost. After danger of frost, transplant to garden spacing 12"-18" apart. Provide support as these can grow to 5' You will applaud your forethought if you use agricultural paper or a thick straw mat when transplating so that your fruits are clean when harvesting, although the husk does protect the cherry considerably. This is not a very attractive plant, so put in a sunny corner of your garden, not the front of the border. And plan on letting it have that corner for years to come as these will reseed handily.