Economic Botany

, Volume 38, Issue 2, pp 210–217 | Cite as

Silverleaf nightshade,Solarium elaeagnifolium, origin, distribution, and relation to man

  • J. W. Boyd
  • D. S. Murray
  • R. J. Tyrl


Silverleaf nightshade (Solanum elaeagnifolium) is a perennial weed that has become increasingly troublesome over the past several decades. Extensive use of soil-applied herbicides, accompanied by a reduction in annual weed competition and reduced tillage, have contributed to its spread and establishment as a serious pest. Crop plants are affected directly via competition and allelopathy or indirectly as the nightshade plants serve as hosts for destructive phytophagous insects or fungal pathogens. Probably native to the southwestern United States and northern Mexico,S. elaeagnifolium is now found in many semiarid regions of the world. Plants were used by the Pima, Kiowa and Navajo Indians in the preparation of food and in the tanning of leather. Containing the toxic glycoalkaloids solanine and solasonine, plants can cause livestock poisonings. The fruits, however, are a source of solasodine, which is used in the commercial manufacture of steroidal hormones.


Economic Botany Steroidal Hormone Solasodine Noxious Weed Perennial Weed 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© The New York Botanical Garden 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. W. Boyd
    • 1
  • D. S. Murray
    • 2
  • R. J. Tyrl
    • 3
  1. 1.Cooperative Extension ServiceUniversity of ArkansasLittle Rock
  2. 2.Department of AgronomyOklahoma State UniversityStillwater
  3. 3.Department of BotanyOklahoma State UniversityStillwater

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