PLANT: Annual to perennial herbs without tubers or stolons; stems 1-3 m long, decumbent with age, fleshy, unarmed, pubescent with unicellular and uniseriate multicellular hairs, sticky-glandular, aromatic. LEAVES: alternate, irregularly pinnately compound to pinnatifid, (10-)20-40 cm long, (3-)7-10 cm wide, with hairs like those on stem; primary lateral leaflets 3-4(-5) pairs, 2-5 cm long, 0.8-2.5 cm wide, ovate to elliptic; base oblique, truncate to cordate; apex acute-attenuate; margin dentate-crenate to shallowly lobed, more so near base; terminal leaflet usually larger than laterals, 3-6 cm long, 1.5-3 cm wide; small interstitial leaflets common; petiole 1.2-6 cm long. INFLORESCENCE: few-flowered racemes, to 10 cm long, ebractate, rarely branched; peduncle 1.5-5 cm. FLOWERS: actinomorphic, more than 5-merous in some cultivars; pedicels 1-1.2 cm long; calyx 0.5-1.2 cm long, with tube minute, the lobes linear; corolla 0.7-2.5 cm long, 1-2 cm in diam., pentagonal, yellow; lobes 2-4 times as long as tube, narrowly lanceolate, reflexed, sparsely pubescent on tips and margins; anthers connivent in a staminal column 0.6-0.8 cm long, this narrowly cone-shaped, tapered and sterile at tip; filaments minute to 0.5 mm long; style 0.6-1 cm long, usually not exceeding in staminal column. FRUITS 1.5-2.5(-12) cm wide, yellow- green, orange to red; seeds 2.5-3.3 mm long, obovate, pale brown, narrowly winged at apex. NOTES: Waste areas, abandoned fields, roadsides, riverbeds; typically collected near populated areas, no persistent populations occur in Arizona: Coconino, Maricopa, Yavapai cos. (Fig. 2D); 300-2100 m (1000-7000 ft); Apr-Sep; native to S. Amer., cultivated worldwide. This species displays enormous variation in fruit shape and size. A small- fruited variety, called “S. l. var. cerasiforme” by some authors, have been suggested to be ancestral to the cultivated form, though recent work has shown this variety to be a mixture of wild and cultivated forms (Nesbitt & Tanksley 2002). REFERENCES: Chiang, F. and L.R. Landrum. Vascular Plants of Arizona: Solanaceae Part Three: Lycium. CANOTIA 5 (1): 17-26, 2009.
Sprawling and freely branched, clammy-pubescent annual (potentially perennial but tender); lvs pinnately or bipinnately compound, to 3 dm, the lfls variable, the larger ovate or lanceolate, toothed or shallowly lobed; fls yellow, 1 cm wide; fr very juicy, several cm thick, in most cultivars scarlet; 2n=24, 48. Native to the Andes, widely cult.; seedlings frequently appear about gardens, roadsides, and waste places, but do not persist. July-Sept.
Gleason, Henry A. & Cronquist, Arthur J. 1991. Manual of vascular plants of northeastern United States and adjacent Canada. lxxv + 910 pp.