The ground cherry is not actually a cherry but rather a fruit in the tomato family. This variety from Poland has been recorded in Pennsylvania as early as 1837. It is known for its sweet, fruity flavor. The ripe fruit had a golden orange color and can store up to three months while in the husk. The plants have heavy yields and can be eaten fresh or used for preserves or in pies. It is still common at roadside stands today.
Sow indoors 6 weeks before the last frost date, 1/8″ deep. Can be sown outdoors in long-season climates. Space plants 24″ apart. Full sun.
Image courtesy of Slow Foods USA
Seed Saving - tomatoes: Solanaceae - (Tomatoes, Eggplants, Tomatillos) - Each little flower is self pollinated in this family -making isolation distances less critical. Tomatoes: Harvest seed when the tomato is ripe. Squeeze out the juice and seeds, leaving the meat of the tomato behind. Add the same amount of water and let ferment for 3 warm days - stirring daily. Pour off water, floating seeds and pulp and let the remaining seeds dry. Store in a cool dry location for up to 10 years. Eggplant: let desired fruit yellow on the vine, cut the fruit in half and dig out the seeds. Rinse with water and then dry. Store seeds in a cool dry location for up to 5 years.