One of the funkiest members of the Solanaceae family, the tree tomato, also known as a tamarillo, is a delicious relative of the tomato from the sub tropics that grows on a woody perennial shrub. Fruits look like an elongated paste tomato with deep red skin and a delicious tangy, sweet orange flesh and a mildly bitter skin. Tamarillos can be eaten fresh or made into salsas and sauces! A very fun greenhouse or house plant, the tree tomato has gorgeous large leaves that add a tropical flare to any sunny patio or sunroom.
Latin Name: Cyphomandra betacea
Site and Soil: 1/2 day to full sun in cooler regions, partial shade in hot regions, and well-drained, acidic soil.
Pollination Requirements: Self-fertile.
Hardiness: Hardy to about 25º F., we’ve left them outside accidentally over winter and they handled dips into the 20’s without a problem
Bearing Age: 2-3 years after planting
Size at Maturity: 6-10 ft. in height.
Taste: Tangy, sweet, and mildly bitter
Fruit Skin: Deep Red
Fruit Flesh: Orange
Bloom Time: May-June
Ripening Time: October-November here in Portland
Yield: 5-20 lbs.
Pests & Diseases: Not bothered by pests or diseases aside from occasional aphids.
USDA Zone: 9a