Growing Cape Gooseberry, also Golden Berry, Inca Berry

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

(Best months for growing Cape Gooseberry in USA - Zone 5a regions)

S = Plant undercover in seed trays 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 ?
20 Jun 20, Harvey Youssef (USA - Zone 7a climate)
Will the plants survive the winter in Virginia (zone 7)?
28 May 20, Liz (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
Have a look at this page www.gardenate.com/plant/Cape Gooseberry?zone=14
13 Mar 20, Jerbear64 (USA - Zone 7a climate)
I simply got the seeds from the berries I purchased at the grocery store.
10 Sep 19, Jerry Michael Eisenband (USA - Zone 10a climate)
Can I grow them in West Palm Beach, FL?
04 Jan 19, Gerd (USA - Zone 11a climate)
What to feed them,ph.Thank you.
28 Jun 18, Kate D (USA - Zone 9a climate)
I acquired a couple of 18 in/46 cm Cape GB plants in small pots yesterday. I was hoping to plant them in the ground in my sunny flower bed off my back patio. After reading comments here I'm now considering planting one in a pot which I can move in the Winter months and the other in the ground which gets heavily mulched before the onset of frost, and maybe cover it with burlap during the dead of Winter. Most of my perennials seem to survive our Winters in this bed. This will be another one of my experiments. I also have some concerns about the size of this plant since I have never seen one...So I have planned to give it 20 in/50 cm all around. The ground doesn't get warm here until May, but our days are long in the Summer here at the 48 lat.
26 May 18, Williams (USA - Zone 5a climate)
What zone would I be in for Florida to plant Golden berrys? Can I plant the seeds from the fruit I get from the store?
20 Oct 18, RobertC (USA - Zone 7a climate)
Florida are in zones 8 to 10. North of Florida is 8, south is 10. You can get around 70 seeds from a single fruit. Prepare 1cm of top soil, then space the seeds 1cm apart on top of the soil and cover with sprinkles of soil, just to cover the seeds. Water with mist and keep it moist. Plants will emerge in 3 to 7 days at 70F. I got 40 plants growing from one fruit's seeds in July 2018. The plant is a tropical grower. I kept 20 in a pot to take inside during winter and transplanted 20 around my house. I will have to transplant from the pot onto individual pots as they are crowding my starter pot. Good luck on your growing.
02 May 17, Elizabeth Medgyesy (USA - Zone 5a climate)
My two year old Cape Gooseberry plants have big strong shoots that have tiny plants along them. I'd like to cut them and transplant them to get more of this delicious berry. Any suggestions on how and where to cut the plant and then transplant the best way?
Showing 1 - 10 of 32 comments

Most vegetables need a fair amount of sunlight, that is one of the main ingredients for them to grow. Some only need 4-6 hrs, some 6-8 hrs. Try growing something in shade and see how it grows. Read up on the internet how many hours of sun plants need.

- Anon

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