Papery Flowers of Orange Physalis

Papery Flowers of Orange Physalis

Chinese lantern, Physalis franchetii, grows from seed and is a very short lived herbaceous perennial. It will grow two feet tall and bear small, white flowers followed by large, balloon-like papery husks in July and August.

Growing Chinese Lanterns

  • The Chinese lantern plant is valued for its inflated orange-red seed coverings or calyx which resemble miniature Chinese lanterns.
  • Inside each 2-inch long husk is a small edible but often tasteless red fruit. The lanterns are not edible
  • The leaves are long pointed and heartshaped.
  • The plant can tolerate very cold conditions, flower quickly from seed and like full sun.
  • For winter bouquets, cut the stems in Autumn just as the lanterns turn color, remove the leaves and hang them, right side up, to dry in a shady, airy place.
  • They are related to the Cape Gooseberry Physalis peruviana and other species to try include P. Alkekengi

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