Cape Gooseberry
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Cape Gooseberry
ntroduced Photo: Pravir Deshmukh
Common name: Cape Gooseberry, Goldenberry, Husk Cherry, Peruvian Ground Cherry, Poha, Poha Berry • Hindi: Macao, Tepariyo, Tipari, रसभरी Rasbhari • Kannada: ಬುಡ್ಡೆ Budde, ಬುಡ್ಡೆ ಹಣ್ಣು Budde hannu, ದೊಡ್ಡಬುಡ್ಡೆ Doddabudde • Marathi: popti, chirbot, phopati • Nepali: रसभरी Rasbhari • Sanskrit: kuntali, tankari, tankasi • Tamil: milaku takkali, pottipallam • Telugu: buddabusara, busarataya • Mizo: Puarpep
Botanical name: Physalis peruviana    Family: Solanaceae (Potato family)
Synonyms: Physalis tomentosa, Physalis puberula, Physalis latifolia

Cape gooseberry is a perennial, somewhat vining plant usually reaching 2-3 ft. in height. Under good conditions it can reach 6 ft, but will need support. The purplish, spreading branches are ribbed and covered with fine hairs. Oppositely arranged leaves are heart-shaped, 2.5-6 inches long. Flowers are bell-shaped, nodding, and arise in leaf axils. They are yellow in color with dark purple-brown spots in the throat, and cupped by a purplish-green, hairy sepal cup. Fruit buds are produced after 12-13 stem internodes are formed. After the flower falls, the calyx expands, forming a straw-colored husk much larger than the fruit enclosed. The fruit is a berry with smooth, waxy, orange-yellow skin and juicy pulp containing numerous very small yellowish seeds. Cape gooseberry is native to South America, but was widely cultivated in South Africa.

Identification credit: Pravir Deshmukh Photographed in Arunachal Pradesh & Delhi.

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