Ground Cherry
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Ground Cherry
ntroduced Photo: S. Kasim
Common name: Ground Cherry, Sun berry • Hindi: रसभरी Rasbhari, Ban Tipariya, Chirpati • Manipuri: ꯃꯣꯔꯣꯛ ꯄꯣꯛꯂꯥꯑꯣꯕꯤ Morok poklaobi • Marathi: Chirboti, Nanvachivel, रान पोपटी Ran-popti • Tamil: Kupanti • Malayalam: Notinotta • Telugu: Kupanti • Kannada: ಗಡ್ಡೆಹಣ್ಣು Gadde hannu, ಸಣ್ಣಬೊಂಡುಲ(ಳ) Sanna bondula ಸಣ್ಣಗುಪ್ಪಟೆ Sanna guppate • Bengali: Bantepariya • Gujarati: पोपटी Popti
Botanical name: Physalis lagascae    Family: Solanaceae (Potato family)
Synonyms: Physalis parviflora, Physalis alkekengi

Ground Cherry is an erect to decumbent or prostrate, weak or occasionally robust, symmetrically much branched, annual herb, 0.1-1 m high. Leaf-stalks are 0.5-4.5 cm long, often slightly winged, rather sheathing at the base; blade membranous or fleshy, 1.5-7.5 x 0.8-4.5 cm, ovate to lanceshaped, sometimes rhombic, ovate-oblong, elliptic or inverted-lanceshaped, base shortly wedge-shaped or narrowed, sometimes blunt, rounded, flat or almost heart-shaped, rarely toothed, the teeth unequal, triangular, blunt, the sinuses rounded, both surfaces sparsely hairy or nearly hairless but velvet-hairy along the nerves and near the margins; minor leaves with blade 0.5-0.7 x 0.3-0.4 cm, elliptic, sometimes present. Flowers are solitary, in leaf-axils, erect to drooping; flower-stalk 2-5 mm long. Sepal-cup is 2-3.5 mm long, 1.5-1.5 mm across at the base of the lobes, bell-shaped, somwhat angled- ribbed, flat or invaginated at the base, in fruit greenish, usually drying purple-veined, 1.2-2 x 1-1.5 cm, spherical to ovoid, 10-angled-ribbed or 10-ribbed. Flowers are greenish-yellow or yellow to white or greenish-cream, blotched with 5 dark purple to brown markings, 4-5 mm long, tubular-bell-shaped. Stamens included or slightly protruding. Fruit is greenish-yellow or pale yellow, 6-10 mm in diameter, spherical or slightly ovoid. Flowering: June-July.

Identification credit: S. Kasim Photographed in Palladam, Tamil Nadu.

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