Solanum dulcamara: bark of the root, twigs.
Solanum nigrum: leaves, herb.
Any of several of the plants of the genus Solanum are called nightshade.
Solanum dulcamara is shrubby, thumb-thick, ashy-green, somewhat angular, climbing stem can reach a length off up to 10 feet. The dark green (or purplish when young) leaves are alternate and variable in shape (may be cordate, landeolate-ovate, or hastate). The purple, star-shaped flowers appear in paniculate clusters on shore lateral or terminal peduncles from May to August. The fruit is a scarlet, bitter berry that hangs on the vine for months after the leaves have fallen.
Solanum nigrum (black nightshade): its erect, angular, branching stem grows 1 to 2 feet high and may be glabrous or covered with inward bent hairs. The leaves are alternate, dark green, ovate, and wavy-toothed or nearly entire. Drooping, lateral, umbel-like clusters of white or pale violet flowers appear from July to October. The fruit is a many-seeded, pea-sized, purple or black berry.
Solanum dulcamara is a perennial woody vine found in moist areas, around houses, and among hedges and thickets in the eastern and north-central states, the Pacific coast, and in Europe. This common woody vine is found around barnyards and waste places.
Solanum nigrum (black nightshade) is an annual plant found in gardens and along old walls and fences in various parts of the U.S. and southern Canada.
Solanum dulcamara: anodyne, diuretic, emetic, herpatic, purgative.
Solanum nigrum: diaphoretic, narcotic, purgative.
Dulcamara is used as a starting material for steroids and is confirmed by scientists to be significant in anti-cancer activity.
Bittersweet nightshade (solanum dulcamara) should not be taken internally without medical supervision. Contains steroids, toxic alkaloids, and glucosides. Will cause vomiting, vertigo, convulsions, weakened heart, and paralysis.
Take black nightshade internally only under medical supervision. Some varieties contain solanine, steroids; deaths have been reported from use. In India, some varieties are eaten as vegetables, but similar varieties may be violently toxic.
There is a deadly nightshade; be sure not to confuse them. Even so, use moderately.
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