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Solanum carolinense (Carolina horsenettle)
Brundage, Stephanie

Solanum carolinense

Solanum carolinense L.

Carolina Horsenettle, Carolina Horse-nettle

Solanaceae (Potato Family)


USDA Symbol: SOCA3

USDA Native Status: L48 (N), CAN (I)

Star-like, white or pale lavender flowers with yellow centers are in lateral clusters on a prickly, erect stem.

A coarse, native, deep-rooted perennial, it is considered a weed by some, yet the flowers are attractive. Deep hoeing is needed to eradicate the underground stems, and gloves must be worn while handling the plant. This plant is not related to the true nettles. Silverleaf Nettle (S. elaeagnifolium), a very similar plant with silvery foliage, occurs in the western United States east to Missouri and is adventive further east. Buffalo Bur (S. rostratum), an annual with bright yellow flowers, is naturalized from the western United States as a weed in fields.


From the Image Gallery

21 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Leaf Arrangement: Alternate
Breeding System: Flowers Bisexual
Fruit Type: Berry
Size Notes: Up to about 3 feet tall.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: White , Yellow , Purple
Bloom Time: May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep , Oct


USA: AL , AR , AZ , CA , CO , CT , DC , DE , FL , GA , IA , ID , IL , IN , KS , KY , LA , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , MO , MS , NC , NE , NH , NJ , NY , OH , OK , OR , PA , RI , SC , SD , TN , TX , UT , VA , VT , WA , WI , WV
Native Distribution: Southern Ontario to New England and New York; south to Florida; west to Texas; north to Nebraska.
Native Habitat: Fields, waste places, gardens.

National Wetland Indicator Status

This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1 (Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here for map of regions.

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Pineywoods Native Plant Center - Nacogdoches, TX

Herbarium Specimen(s)

NPSOT 0909 Collected Jun 26, 1994 in Bexar County by Harry Cliffe
NPSOT 0956 Collected Sep 18, 1994 in Bexar County by Harry Cliffe

2 specimen(s) available in the Digital Herbarium


Bibref 328 - Wildflowers of Texas (2003) Ajilvsgi, Geyata.

Search More Titles in Bibliography

Web Reference

Webref 80 - Illinois Wildflowers (2002) John Hilty
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

Additional resources

USDA: Find Solanum carolinense in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Solanum carolinense in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Solanum carolinense


Record Modified: 2023-02-28
Research By: TWC Staff

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