Solanum nitidibaccatum Bitter, Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. 11: 208. 1912

Knapp, Sandra, Barboza, Gloria E., Bohs, Lynn & Saerkinen, Tiina, 2019, A revision of the Morelloid Clade of Solanum L. (Solanaceae) in North and Central America and the Caribbean, PhytoKeys 123, pp. 1-144 : 77-79

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Solanum nitidibaccatum Bitter, Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. 11: 208. 1912


11. Solanum nitidibaccatum Bitter, Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. 11: 208. 1912 Figures 33 View Figure 33 , 34 View Figure 34

Solanum styleanum Dunal, Prodr. [A. P. de Candolle] 13(1): 44. 1852. Type. Chile. Sin. loc., J. Styles s.n. (holotype: G-DC [G00144016]).

Bosleria nevadensis A.Nelson, Proc. Biol. Soc. Washington 18(30): 175. 1905. Type. United States of America. Nevada: Washoe County, Pyramid Lake, 9 Jun 1903, G.H. True s.n. (holotype: RM [RM0004387]).

Solanum patagonicum C.V.Morton, Revis. Argentine Sp. Solanum 146. 1976. Type. Chile. Región XII (Magallanes): Río Paine, 100m, 15 Jan 1931, A. Donat 415 (holotype: BM [BM000617673]; isotypes: BA, BAF, GH [GH00077732], K, SI [SI003331, SI003332], US [US00027733, acc. # 2639758]).

Solanum physalifolium Rusby var. nitidibaccatum (Bitter) Edmonds, Bot. J. Linn. Soc. 92: 27. 1986. Type. Based on Solanum nitidibaccatum Bitter


Chile. Sin. loc., 1829, E.F. Poeppig s.n. (lectotype, designated by Edmonds 1986, pg. 27: W [acc. # 0004151]; isolectotype: F [v0073346F, acc. # 875221]).


Annual herbs to 20 cm tall, prostrate and spreading to 30 cm in diameter or more. Stems terete, green, not markedly hollow; new growth densely viscid-pubescent with translucent simple, uniseriate 2-8(10)-celled spreading trichomes 1.5-2.0 mm long with a glandular apical cell; older stems glabrescent. Sympodial units difoliate, the leaves not geminate. Leaves simple, 2.0 –5.5(– 9.5) cm long, 1.5-5.0 (-6.5) cm wide, ovate to broadly ovate, rarely elliptic; adaxial surface sparsely pubescent with spreading 2-4-celled translucent, simple, uniseriate gland-tipped trichomes like those of the stem, these denser along the veins; abaxial surface more evenly densely pubescent on the lamina and veins; major veins 3-6 pairs, not clearly evident abaxially; base attenuate to cuneate, at times asymmetric, decurrent on the petiole; margins entire or sinuate-dentate; apex acute to obtuse; petioles 0.5 –2.7(– 4.5) cm long, sparsely pubescent with simple uniseriate glandular trichomes like those of the stems and leaves. Inflorescences 1.0-2.0 cm long, lateral, generally internodal but in new growth appearing leaf-opposed, unbranched, with 4-8(-10) flowers clustered at the tip (sub-umbelliform) or spread along a short rhachis, sparsely pubescent with spreading trichomes like those on stems and leaves; peduncle 0.6-1.3 cm long; pedicels 4-12 mm long, 0.1-0.2 mm in diameter at the base and 0.2-0.4 mm in diameter at the apex, straight and spreading, articulated at the base; pedicel scars spaced 0.3-1 mm apart. Buds subglobose, the corolla only slightly exserted from the calyx tube before anthesis. Flowers 5-merous, all perfect. Calyx tube 1-2 mm long, conical, the lobes 1.7-2.5 mm long, less than 1 mm wide, triangular with acute to obtuse apices, sparsely pubescent with 1-4-celled glandular trichomes like those of the pedicels. Corolla 4-6 mm in diameter, white with a yellow-green central eye with black “V” or “U” shaped edges in the lobe sinuses, rotate-stellate, lobed 1/3 of the way to the base, the lobes 2.3-3.2 mm long, 2.5-3.7 mm wide, spreading at anthesis, sparsely papillate-pubescent abaxially with 1-4-celled simple uniseriate trichomes, especially along tips and midvein. Stamens equal; filament tube minute; free portion of the filaments 1.5-2.0 mm long, adaxially sparsely pubescent with tangled uniseriate 4-6-celled simple trichomes; anthers 1.0-1.4 mm long, 0.5-0.8 mm wide, ellipsoid, yellow, poricidal at the tips, the pores lengthening to slits with age and drying. Ovary globose, glabrous; style 2.5-3.0 mm long, densely pubescent with 2-3-celled simple uniseriate trichomes in the lower half where included in the anther cone, exserted 0.2-1.0 mm beyond the anther cone; stigma capitate, minutely papillate, green in live plants. Fruit a globose berry, 4-13 mm in diameter, brownish green and marbled with white (this not easily visible in herbarium specimens) at maturity, translucent, the surface of the pericarp usually shiny; fruiting pedicels 4-13 mm long, ca. 0.2 mm in diameter at the base, spaced 1-3 mm apart, reflexed and slightly curving, dropping with mature fruits, not persistent; fruit ing calyx accrescent, becoming papery in mature fruit, the tube ca. 3mm long, the lobes 2.5 –3.5(– 4.0) mm long and 3-4 mm wide, appressed against the berry, but the berry clearly visible. Seeds 13-24 per berry, 2.0-2.2 mm long, 1.2-1.4 mm wide, flattened and tear-drop shaped with a subapical hilum, brown, the surfaces minutely pitted, the testal cells pentagonal in outline. Stone cells usually (1-)2-3 per berry, occasionally absent, ca. 0.5 mm in diameter. Chromosome number: 2 n =2 × =24 (see Särkinen et al. 2018).


(Figure 35 View Figure 35 ) Solanum nitidibaccatum has an amphitropical distribution in temperate South America and temperate western North America, including northern Baja California. A single collection (Hammel et al. 6964) is known from the high elevation regions of Chiriquí, Panama ( D’Arcy 1987). Solanum nitidibaccatum has often been recorded as adventive in North America, but the large number of early herbarium collections far from ports of entry suggest it is native (see also S. triflorum ) at least from the Rocky Mountains westwards.


Solanum nitidibaccatum is a disturbance loving species, usually found growing along roadsides in the shade of trees and shrubs, and in rocky and sandy soil between (0-)1,200 and 2,500 m elevation. It is a common weed of agriculture and is often found growing in sandy soil in seasonal washes (arroyos).

Common names.

Canada. Hairy nightshade, morelle poilu ( Alex et al. 1980, as S. sarrachoides ). United States of America. Ground-cherry nightshade ( NatureServe 2017, as S. physalifolium ), Hairy nightshade ( Mohlenbrock 2014), Hoe nightshade ( USDA Plants 2017, as S. physalifolium ), "ah-dye-ee na-tizuah" (Paiute, Train et al. 1941, as S. villosum ).


The fruit were used either ripe or in a decoction as a cure for diarrhoea by the Paiute people of Nevada ( Train et al. 1941, as S. villosum ); leaves and berries were soaked in water and applied to watermelon seeds to ensure a good crop by the Navajo ( Moerman 1998, as S. physalifolium ). Train et al. (1941) state that the Paiute people of Nevada "used a tea made from the berries when traveling in areas where the water was not potable".

Preliminary conservation status ( IUCN 2017).

Least Concern (LC). Solanum nitidibaccatum is widespread and weedy especially in the southwestern United States of America and the Great Plains; it also occurs in southern South America. For EOO see Table 6 View Table 6 .


Solanum nitidibaccatum is morphologically similar to and has been treated as S. sarrachoides in most previous treatments of North American morelloids (e.g., Schilling 1981; Schilling and Heiser 1979); it is also often identified as S. physalifolium Rusby. Edmonds (1986) showed that S. nitidibaccatum and S. sarrachoides were distinct morphologically, and phylogenetic results ( Särkinen et al. 2015b) confirm this; molecular sequence data also show these two taxa are not closely related despite their overall similarity. Solanum nitidibaccatum has also sometimes been treated at subspecific rank within S. physalifolium , an Andean endemic (see Särkinen and Knapp 2016), but the species are distinct although preliminary data suggest they are closely related (see Särkinen and Knapp 2016). Solanum nitidibaccatum is usually thought to be native to the southeastern parts of South America, from which it has been introduced extensively to other parts of the world where it has become a prolific and successful weed of disturbed sites. The species is locally abundant throughout North America ( Ogg et al.1981) and is perhaps native there west of the Rockies (see Distribution above).

Solanum nitidibaccatum can be distinguished from S. sarrachoides in its shorter, plumper anthers, the blackish purple markings in the centre of the corolla on the margins of the central star, and in its fruits that are shiny at maturity, marbled with white (not usually visible on herbarium sheets) and not completely enclosed in the accrescent calyx. In addition, the mature inflorescences of S. nitidibaccatum are always internodal while those of S. sarrachoides are usually leaf-opposed.

Details of typification of the synonyms of S. nitidibaccatum can be found in Barboza et al. (2013) and Särkinen et al. (2018).

Specimens examined.

See Suppl. materials 1 and 3.














Solanum nitidibaccatum Bitter, Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. 11: 208. 1912

Knapp, Sandra, Barboza, Gloria E., Bohs, Lynn & Saerkinen, Tiina 2019

Solanum physalifolium Rusby var. nitidibaccatum

J. M. Edmonds 1986

Solanum patagonicum

C. V. Morton 1976

Bosleria nevadensis

A.Nelson 1905

Solanum styleanum

Dun 1852