Horse nettle, apple of Sodom, ball nettle, bull nettle, Carolina horse nettle, nightshade, sand brier, tread-softly.
A prickly erect perennial that grows to 3 feet in height. Leaves are shallowly lobed pinnately, broad, with yellow thorns on veins beneath. Flowers are pale violet to white. Fruit is a yellow berry.
May to September.
Sandy openings, dry fields, wastelands, and roadsides.
Berries, leaves, and rootstock in the fall.
This plant is extremely poisonous. The berries, when properly prepared, have been used as diuretics, antispasmodics, anodynes; and according to the U.S. Dispensatory, they have also been used in a treatment for epilepsy.