smooth groundcherry

Smooth groundcherry – Physalis longifolia var. subglabrata

Physalis longifolia Nutt. var. subglabrata (Mackenzie & Bush) Cronq.

Solanaceae (Nightshade family)

MI Status


Life cycle

Erect, branching, rhizomatous perennial.


Alternate, egg-, lance- to diamond-shaped with entire to toothed margins and long petioles. Leaves are smooth to slightly hairy.


Erect, branching, angled, up to 3-foot-tall herbaceous stems that become smooth and semi-woody with age.

Flowers and fruit

Flowers have five yellow to greenish yellow petals with purple centers, fused into a bell shape and found drooping and solitary in branch and leaf axils. Fruit are orange, red or purple, globe-shaped berries surrounded by a green, lantern shaped, papery bladder. Each fruit contains many flat, circular to kidney-shaped seeds.


Seeds and rhizomes.

Similar weeds

Apple of Peru

[Nicandra physalodes (L.) Gaertn.]

Differs by having an aggressive, annual habit, being up to 4 feet tall and having blue, upward facing, bell-shaped flowers.

Smooth groundcherry flowers and fruit
Smooth groundcherry flowers & fruit
Smooth groundcherry seedling
Smooth groundcherry seedling

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