Tuesday, August 26, 2008

16. Bittersweet Nightshade

This tiny jewel of a flower was the only one still open in the area (the boundary between the backyard and the woods that abut them), and I was so pleased to find it. Unfortunately, either my camera does not have a setting for extreme close-ups or I just haven't found it yet. I've actually come across Solanum dulcamara before now, but the flowers had already borne fruit, which made it harder for me to recognize. (How many red-berried plants can there be within walking distance of my house? Answer: perhaps too many to identify.) Part of the potato family, this climbing, vine-like wildflower is also called Purple Nightshade, and its berries are, in the words of Newcomb's Wildflower Guide, "somewhat poisonous."

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