Strawberry Tomato   
Foto info
Strawberry Tomato
P Introduced Photo: S. Kasim
Common name: Strawberry Tomato, Ground Cherry, Husk Tomato
Botanical name: Physalis pruinosa    Family: Solanaceae (Potato family)
Synonyms: Phsyalis nicandroides var. attenuata, Physalis maxima

Strawberry Tomato is an attractive, shrublike small plant 1-3 feet tall with somewhat arching branches. It is similar to Cape Gooseberry, but is more prominently hairy. The leaves are elliptic or heart-shaped, toothed along the edges. The bell-shaped flowers are yellow marked with purplish brown spots: attractive enough, but often somewhat hidden from view. After the flower drops off, the calyx expands to cover the fruit (conveniently protecting it from predators), resulting in a not-unattractive lantern-shaped husk. Small orange fruit similar in size and shape to a cherry tomato. The fruit is covered in papery husk. Flavor is a pleasant, unique tomato /pineapple like blend. Strawberry Tomato is native to Mexico, cultivated as a garden plant elsewhere.

Identification credit: S. Kasim Photographed in Radhapuram, Tirunelveli Dist, Tamil Nadu.

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