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Tamarillo Growing Information © Frances Michaels

Botanical Name: Cyphomandra betacea
Common Names: Tamarillo, Tree Tomato, Tomate de Árbol
Plant Family: Solanaceae

Plant Description
An erect, branching, shrubby, fast growing evergreen. It has large, heart-shaped, hairy leaves, 15 - 20 cm long. The flowers are small, pale pink and fragrant. The fruit are egg-shaped, about 5 cm long and can be red or yellow in colour. Tamarillos need a rich, moist, well-drained soil. It will not tolerate waterlogging or drought and the roots are very shallow, so keep it well mulched. Commercially it is only suitable for frost-free subtropical and warm temperate areas, however the range for a home orchard is wider, as it survives light frost, by dropping affected leaves and shooting back in spring.
Plant Height: 1.5 - 2 m high

Sow When
Germinates best at 24 - 29°C soil temperature.
Temperate Areas: Early spring - inside with extra heat; outside after frost danger has passed.
Subtropical Areas: Spring.
Tropical Areas: Unlikely to do well.

Planting Details
Planting Depth: 5 mm deep.
Spacing: 3 m between plants.
Position: full sun.
Soil Type: fertile, very well-drained, pH 5.8 - 7.
Details: Seedlings should have their growth tip removed to encourage multiple trunks, this makes the fruit easier to reach and reduces the risk of a heavily laden tree toppling over.

Harvest
600 days
Eating: Fruit can be eaten raw, in salads or fruit salads, cooked as a fruit sauce or made into jam. Nutritionally tamarillos are high in Vit. A, Vit B6, Vit. C, Vit. E, iron, and low in carbohydrates.

Available as seed: Tamarillo

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