Eastern black nightshade – Solanum ptycanthum

Eastern black nightshade

Solanum ptycanthum Dun.
Solanaceae (Nightshade family)

Life cycle

Erect, branching summer annual.

Leaves

Seedlings have small, egg-shaped cotyledons with a pointed tip and a purplish tinge underneath followed by alternate, petiolated, simple leaves. First leaves are generally smooth, egg-shaped with wavy margins and a purplish tinge underneath; later leaves are slightly hairy, egg- to diamond-shaped with entire to irregularly toothed margins.

Stems

Erect and branching, up to 3-foot-tall stems with few hairs.

Flowers and fruit

Flowers are white to purple tinged, star-shaped with five petals fused at the base surrounding five bright yellow anthers; found in downward facing clusters. Berries are glossy black at maturity and globe-shaped, and contain up to 110 seeds.

Reproduction

Seeds.

Toxicity

All plant parts are toxic to animals.

Similar weeds

Bittersweet nightshade (S. dulcamara L.)
Differs by having a vining, perennial habit; leaves that are oval to egg-shaped with pointed tips, smooth margins and usually two basal lobes; and purple to blue flowers that yield bright red, oval berries at maturity.

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Eastern black nightshade fruit
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Eastern black nightshade leaf
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Eastern black nightshade underside of leaf
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Eastern black nightshade young plant
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Eastern black nightshade seedling

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Plant & Pest Diagnostics

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