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Cape Gooseberry

Also known as:
Ground Cherry
South America

General description

Herbaceous, hairy shrub < 1.6 m tall. Leaves are dark green, hairy and heart-shaped. Flowers are small, yellow with a purple/brown centre and borne in December – January. Fruit is a small, round, yellow berry enclosed in a papery husk.

What you need to know

Although Cape gooseberry is not a legally declared pest plant, it may still be invasive in some situations. Consider lower risk alternatives for your garden, such as native plants.

Forests, forest and riparian margins, disturbed habitats, plantations, gardens.

Seeds dispersed by animals. Human-mediated dispersal through deliberate plantings.

May dominate natural habitats, but no notable impact so far in New Zealand.

Site Management

Follow up treated areas 3 times per year. Encourage natural regeneration of native plants or replant treated areas where possible after 2-3 treatments to establish dense ground cover and minimise reinvasion.

Recommended approaches

Physical control

Method: Dig out

Plant parts requiring disposal: Seeds

Disposal options: Compost in a composting weed bag or remove to greenwaste or landfill if practical


Biocontrol is currently not available for this species.

Community agrichemical control recommendations

No qualifications
Foliar spray with 100ml glyphosate green per 10L of water

Certified Handler/Experienced agrichemical user
Foliar spray with 100ml glyphosate green per 10L of water and 10ml penetrant

CAUTION: When using any herbicide or pesticide please read the label thoroughly to ensure that all instructions and safety requirements are followed.

RPMP status

Not a legally declared pest plant
Cape gooseberry - Main species image