Grande Rio Verde variety produces heavy yields of 56-85 gram (2-3 ounce), tangy green tomatillos wrapped in a papery husk. Grande Rio Verde is a semi determinant plant that is supported by a sturdy compact bush that reaches 60-91 cm (24-36”) high. Heavy duty Tomato cages help support the heavy yields of tomatillos. Grande Rio Verde can spread to at least 91-121 cm (3-4’) across. Expect blooming to occur in late spring and harvesting to start by late summer. Tomatillo needs a moderate amount of maintenance, so some level of previous experience comes in handy when growing this plant. Tomatillos are ripe when they fall off the plant.
Sow 2-3 seeds 6-12 mm (¼-½") deep in 7-10 cm (3-4”) pots. Thin to the strongest plant. Start seeds indoors or in a greenhouse mid to late April. The seeds require warm soil, roughly 21-26°C (70-80° F). Warmer soils will promote faster germination (7-14 days). Keep soil moist, but not soggy while awaiting germination. Moderate watering will suffice once seedlings break through the soil. Select a well-drained location that receives lots of sunlight after the last frost to transplant from pots. Tomatillos are sensitive to cold and frost, so be cautious not to transplant too early. Usually we transplant at the end of May or the first week of June into the garden, when the plants are 5 weeks old. Set transplants 60-90 cm (24-36") part in rows 1.5-2.0 m (5-6') apart. If direct seeding, sow after all danger of frost is past.
Soil Conditions: Well worked rich, loose well-drained soil. Soil PH: 5.5-7.0, Ideal 6.3-6.5
Planting Depth: Sow seeds 6-12 mm (¼-½") deep.
Germination: 7-14 days.
Height at Maturity: 60-91 cm (24-36”). Spread: 91-121 cm (3-4’) across
Days to Maturity: (70-83 days)
Watering: Tomatillos have moderate water requirements to support leaf production and fruit production. Try to use soaker or drip hoses to water with. Avoid getting water on the leaves.
Sun/Shade: Full Sun
Spacing after Thinning: Set transplants 60-90 cm (24-36") part in rows 1.5-2.0 m (5-6') apart.
Additional Information Tomatillos begin to mature approximately 60-70 days after transplanting, and can be harvested once the fruits have become plump and the outer husk begins to dry out to a light brown.