Prefer physalis if possible
The warmth-loving physalis takes a long time to grow, bloom and set small, cherry-like fruits. In addition, due to the risk of frost, the seeds should not be released outdoors before mid to late May. Both reasons mean that the German summer is too short to harvest ripe physalis in time for the end of the growing season. For this reason, it is advisable to move the plants on the windowsill as early as February if possible and to put the young plants in the open air bed from May. Alternatively, it can also be kept in a bucket on the balcony or terrace.
- Do not fertilize physalis too much
- Physalis are not hardy
- Physalis are in season all year round
Proceed as follows when pulling out the plants:
- Take small plant pots and fill them with standard potting soil.
- With the help of a finger, make a hole about 5 millimeters deep in the center of the substrate.
- Drop three to four seeds into it and cover them loosely with soil.
- Spray the seeds with water. Keep them evenly moist - physalis needs quite a lot of water.
- Alternatively, you can take a balcony box and place a number of seeds in the substrate.
- Place the pot / box in a light and warm place (e.g. window sill in the living room).
- As soon as the plants have developed between three to four leaves, you can prick them out, ie transfer them individually into a larger pot with a diameter of approx. 10 to 12 centimeters.
Sow physalis directly into the field
Of course, direct sowing outdoors is also possible, but at least not before the end of May for the Andean berries (as well as for other non-frost-hardy Physalis species such as the pineapple cherry). But then it will probably be too late for a harvest in the same year, as the fruits that ripen in August / September with sufficient sun and warmth can no longer reach maturity due to the autumn coolness. Contrary to many information on the net, at least the Andean berry is a perennial plant, which means you can safely overwinter it and it will bear fruit in the next year. For this, however, you should best cultivate the physalis in a pot, because it is not winter hardy. On the other hand, physalis planted outdoors are in fact only annual because they do not survive the German winter.The lantern flower is an exception.
Tips & Tricks
If you already have a physalis in your garden, you no longer need to buy seeds. You can dry the seeds and harvest them for sowing the following spring, or you can lightly crush some fruits and bury them under a thin layer of soil in the garden. The compost is also very suitable for sowing.