Friday, August 30, 2013

This was my first year growing tomatillos.  I love salsa verde and green enchilada sauce and when I started looking up recipes for these sauces I realized that tomatillos were the secret ingredient, so they went on the "to grow" list.  I had never seen a tomatillo plant before, but I was able to grow more than I could use without much effort. 

I started 4 plants from seed at the same time as my tomatoes.  Next year I would only plant two and start them a week or two later as the seedlings grew faster than the tomatoes.  I would also give them much more room in the garden.  The top photo was taken in June and now at the end of August you can't even walk between the rows.  I tried tying them to a fence, but you might be better off to just stick a sturdy tomato cage around them and let them sprawl.  The stems are more brittle than tomatoes.

The way the fruit develops is very unique.  First you see the yellow flowers which look kind of like hats to me.  The plant then forms an empty sac which looks kind of like a mini paper lantern (pictured above).  The fruit slowly fills the sac and then breaks free ready to be harvested (pictured below).  I was completely fascinated by this whole process. 

I have enjoyed using this recipe to use up my bounty.


  1. Very informative and so interesting. Wonderful photos. Thank you for posting this has helped my to understand how the tomatillos grow.
    Rose - TN

    1. Thanks! I am no expert, but I learn through doing and observing. And also reading books at my library. :)