tomatilla plant (29697 bytes)


By Robert Cox, Colorado State University Cooperative Extension, Horticulture

The tomatillo is a relative of tomato, pepper, eggplant and potato. Some garden centers sell them. One plant should be sufficient;tomatilla fruit (9318 bytes) tomatilla bloom (10029 bytes)plant it in full sun and allow it 3-4 feet in all directions.

Tomatillo grows quickly in a warm spot and develops attractive yellow flowers. These are followed by a "Chinese lantern" husk, in which the fruit develops.

Wait to pick until the fruit is as large as the husk or when it grows large enough to split the husk. Earlier-picked tomatillos are light green and tart, later-picked ones are more yellowish-green and sweeter, about 2 inches in diameter. Tomatillos can be used in sauces, salsa verde or in tomato-based salsas.


Photos: Judy Sedbrook

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Date last revised: 01/05/2010