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General information and discussion about cultivating tomatillos.

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Old February 5, 2010   #16
veggie babe
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paint me pea green with envy I love Mexico and all their wonders. I have been lucky enough to vacation there several times, but my DH would never live there.

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Old February 5, 2010   #17
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Husbands...what are you gonna do? I am lucky mine LOVES/LIVES to ocean fish (not a lot of that in Wyoming... ) He also loves to garden and Wyoming has such a short growing season. He likes to explore like I do...I am a very fortunate woman...35 years... most men would have killed me off by now!
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Old February 6, 2010   #18
mtbigfish
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Broken
Do you let your tomatillo's fall to the ground (ripen) or pick green before shipping?

Also has anyone tried the one Mexicans seem to use most the tomatillo "Mexican Strain"
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Old February 6, 2010   #19
brokenbar
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I pick the ones I ship before they fall...It takes them about 3 to 4 days to get to Oregon and then they are all the way ripe with a brown paper husk. I ship peppers and tomatoes to her also. She has MS and won't eat anything that is not organic. THANK GOD for flat rate boxes or I would be a pauper! You can really fit a lot in that largest flat rate box which I think is like $10.50?

I have grown the Mexican Strain...It has TONS of flavor but is really small and more "sticky" than others...there is a sticky substance between the husk and the fruit of all tomatillos but the Mexican ones are almost sugary/syrupy feeling, not tasting. I was unsure about just processing them as they were or washing them...I left them as they were. The sticky stuff really has no taste... They tomatillos themselves are tart-er in flavor and I like that. I ordinarily add twice the lime juice called for in Salsa Verde anyway. They were a lot more work and it took a lot more of them to make a big batch of salsa. Also, they practically jumped off the plants...way more of them on the ground than other varieties and because they are small, they bounce and roll all over the place (which probably explains why they are EVERYWHERE in Mexico...) I am lazy...what can I say?
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Old February 6, 2010   #20
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broken
thanks I was wondering if you picked them just before ripe - so they turn ok - I just get really warm water and rub the tomatillo and the sticky comes off pretty easy - the ones we see here are the size of a sald tomato usually and a few smaller and larger - I hand pick the bigger ones if I am going to make chunky salsa verde with small chopped pieces as I am lazy too - but when I make chili verde or blended salsa verde I use any size as I cut them in bigger chungs to cook down with the rest of the ingredients then run through the blender

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Old February 7, 2010   #21
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BrokenBar,

It's good to see you posting again. I thought we had lost you for good. Good luck on your Mexican adventures. I've considered moving there myself but.... to many irons in the fire. Rick Bayless talks alot about those Merida markets on his show, Mexico One Plate At A Time. Anyway... good to hear from you.

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Old February 7, 2010   #22
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Hey BR! We were there most of the summer and I cannot wait to go back. THings are really cheap there now because our economy is so bad there are not as many American's buying houses. The Merida Market is GYNORMOUS....everything fresh every day...I haTE shopping in the supermarket now! I will be here...
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Old June 24, 2010   #23
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I'm growing this plant for the first time as well. Only put one in the garden...can't imagine 50! This thing grows fast (5 foot tall) and blooms like crazy, but I haven't had a single fruit set on it. Any tips?
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Old June 24, 2010   #24
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Sorry to butt in, but brokenbar said this in entry #4, which might explian this issue:

"....phase them. They are not self-fruiting so you need several for pollination. When the...."

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Old June 24, 2010   #25
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Oh..ok...I see that now. I read on another thread that you didn't need two.

I'm tending to believe brokenbar's advice though. Hmmm...what to do?
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Old June 27, 2010   #26
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I have "lanterns" on one of my tomatillo plants. Do those lanterns form only if the flower pollenated? They seem too heavy to be empty inside but it's hard to tell since they are attached to the plant.

Hunt- I read conflicting information about whether or not you need 2 plants to pollinate. Dr Carolyn posted a link somewhere to a university website with a scholarly paper about tomatillos that indicated that 2 were required so I planted 2 to be on the safe side. I think if there is another physalis in the area you'll get pollination. That might be worth investigating. You could see if a nursery nearby has Chinese Lanterns or ground cherries. I saw some for sale at our local farmer's market yesterday. I'll try to find the link and repost it here.

I found the link:
http://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/1492/tomatillo.html

Last edited by lj in ny; June 27, 2010 at 05:30 PM. Reason: added the link
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Old July 6, 2010   #27
lj in ny
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Hunt-what if you take cuttings from one plant, root them and make another plant. I wonder if it would work. Anyone know?
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Old August 2, 2010   #28
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I have grown several types from yellow to pineapple to verde but the best ever is the one that keeps sprouting every year in a garden on an old Forest Service Compound. Supposed to have been growing there for over 20 years as a sprout. I had some sprout this year in my garden as well and they are out doing the plants I bought.
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Old August 2, 2010   #29
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I have three toma verde plants - they're growing and flowering like crazy, but no lanterns yet. Any ideas? I've grown them before - usually just two -- and had better luck getting the fruit than this time out.
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Old August 3, 2010   #30
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i finally have some lanterns but, no fruit. by tne number of flowers i should have a lot, that is, if the heat doesn't do them in. jon
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