Electronic Flora of South Australia
Electronic Flora of South Australia
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Electronic Flora of South Australia species Fact Sheet

Family: Solanaceae
Solanum nigrum

Citation: L., Sp. Pl. 186 (1753).

Synonymy: Not Applicable

Common name: Black-berry nightshade, black nightshade.

A herb or soft-wooded shrub often lasting several years, frequently with a dark-green or purple-green aspect, pubescent with curved appressed simple hairs and with almost sessile glandular ones; leaves ovate, 4-7 x 2-5 cm, juvenile ones entire, later leaves shallowly and bluntly toothed with 2-10 lobes; the leaf edges sometimes undulate; petioles 1-3 cm, flattened and narrowly winged in the upper portion.

Inflorescence a short raceme of 4-8 flowers; peduncle 1-2 cm, rather erect; floral rhachis 3-5 mm; pedicels c. 7 mm, spreading in flower, rather deflexed in fruit; calyx lobes hardly 1 mm long, acute; corolla c. 1 cm diam., stellate; the lobes acute and appressed, pubescent outside; filaments c. 1.5 mm, sparsely pilose below; anthers c. 2 mm, oblong; ovary globular, glabrous; style c. 5 mm, lower half pilose; stigma capitate and placed at or above the level of the anther pore openings.

Mature fruit in trusses of 5-8, dull-black or purple-black, c. 6-8 mm diam., generally falling without the pedicel; mature calyx lobes appressed or scarcely reflexed, not enlarged; the lobes bluntly triangular, with an acute or rounded apex; seeds c. 2 mm long, bone-colour; sclerotic granules rarely present.

image of FSA3_Solanum_nig.jpg Flowering and fruiting branch and a fruit.
Image source: fig. 577A in Jessop J.P. & Toelken H.R. (Ed.) 1986. Flora of South Australia (4th edn).

Published illustration: Cunningham et al. (1982) Plants of western New South Wales, p. 588.

Distribution:  S.Aust.: NW, LE, NU, GT, FR, EA, EP, NL, MU, YP, SL, KI, SE.   All States.   Native to Europe, now a cosmopolitan weed.

Conservation status: naturalised

Flowering time: throughout the year.

SA Distribution Map based
on current data relating to
specimens held in the
State Herbarium of South Australia

Biology: S. nigrum is often wrongly called 'deadly night-shade', a common name better applied to Atropa.

Author: Not yet available

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