*Solanum dimidiatum Raf., Aut. Bot. 8: 107 (1840)
T: Texas, New Mexico, Arkansas; n.v.
[S. carolinense auct. non L.: H.E. Kleinschmidt & R.W. Johnson, Weeds Queensland 202 (1979)]
Clonal perennial herb to 50 cm, green, pubescent with minute stellate hairs; prickles to 7 mm long, scattered on midrib of lower leaf-surface, petioles and stems.
Leaves ovate to broadly lanceolate; lamina 5–12 cm long, 3–7 cm wide, slightly discolorous, lobed; lobes broadly triangular to oblong; petiole 1–4 cm long.
Inflorescence often forked, few–15–flowered; peduncle 1–2 cm long to first fork; rachis 2–5 cm long; pedicels 1 cm long. Calyx 8–10 mm long; lobes broadly triangular with slender apex, 3–5 mm long. Corolla stellate, shallowly incised, 30–40 mm diam., violet. Anthers 5–7 mm long.
Berry globular, 15–20 mm diam., yellow. Seeds 2.5–4 mm long, pale buff. n=36.
Distribution and ecology
Native to south-eastern U.S.A. Introduced to Australia and naturalised in the Bundaberg area, Qld, where associated with the sugar cane industry.
Bean (2004) records that the species was targetted for eradication and has not been seen since 1972.
Western horsenettle, Torrey's nightshade
While considered to be part of the subg. Leptostemonum its relationships within the group are not known further. It was not part of the Levin et al. (2006) molecular analysis of the subgenus.
Plant status, if any
Previously declared as a noxious weed in Qld (as S. carolinense L., a name misapplied to the species), but the successful eradication programme has presumably meant its removal from the list of Declared Plants since it is no longer to be found there. See Navie, S. (2004). Declared Plants of
The very closely related S. carolinense which occurs on the North Island of
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