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Growing Cape Gooseberry, also Golden Berry, Inca Berry

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

(Best months for growing Cape Gooseberry in Australia - tropical 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 10°C and 25°C. (Show °F/in)
  • Space plants: 50 cm apart
  • Harvest in 14-16 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Will happily grow in a flower border
  • 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.

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

02 Sep 18, Margaret Doro (Australia - temperate climate)
You can buy cape gooseberry seed from
25 Aug 18, Dorothy (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Hi. Can anyone help. I live in the Redlands and can grow cape gooseberries beautifully but Pest love them. I get about three different types of insects and a grub. Incesticide doesn’t help much, tried clay dust, all sorts... I have heard about boiled up ruhbarb leaves works against bugs. Can anyone help please. Dorothy
27 Aug 18, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Have you tried tomato dust or try yellow sticky paper/traps on eBay or buy from Bunnings or the cheap shops.
27 Aug 18, Mike (Australia - temperate climate)
Go to Gardenpatch Organics Seeds and Plants on the internet. Click garden products and garden netting - vegie netting. 3.5 ($4/m) or 6m ($7.50/m) wide. Buy 2 meters. Put a few stakes in and hang the netting up on it - like an A frame. It will keep all insects and bugs out.
31 Aug 18, Jane (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Do you mean cover the entire frame so nothing enters? If so then how are things eg tomatoes, pollinated? Thnx.
03 Sep 18, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Cover the whole frame - tomatoes pollinate by the wind mainly. If you want to keep insects out then you need to use vegie netting, If birds - bird netting. Vegie netting means you can have rows approx. 9' long and 3.5 meter wide will go around both side of the plants. I put two stakes in the ground about 8-9' apart. A steel rod between them to keep them apart. 1200mm high 150mm x 150mm wire mesh between the posts tied to the posts. You wind the tomato plant in and out of the 150mm sq holes and can use bale twine or whatever to hold the plants to the mesh. Put some thin poles out about 12-18
06 Aug 18, (New Zealand - cool/mountain climate)
I have just picked my rambling cape gooseberry bush clean, anticipating some lovely jam. The berries are tiny. About the size of a small pea! Any hints so I might get fatter ones next year?
09 Sep 18, Angela (Australia - temperate climate)
I grow the Aunt Molly variant /relative- also known as Ground Cherry. You don’t pick them. You wait till they fall and the case has turned papery and gather them from the ground. This happens very late in the season, seems to take forever. Highly recommend Aunt Molly.
07 Aug 18, (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Poor soil or growing conditions - the amount of sunlight etc. If you have a smaller weak plant then hit it up with some fertiliser or add some compost or manures around the plant for the next crop.
02 Jul 18, PETER (Australia - temperate climate)
Where can I purchase cape gooseberry seeds
Showing 1 - 10 of 315 comments

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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.
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