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SOLVED: is it pigeon berry?

Rockport, TX(Zone 9b)

I bought some plants at a yard sale including what I was told was pigeon berry. (Rivina humilis) This little plant was among the little babies growing amidst the bigger plants. Is this pigeon berry? (The bigger plants have succumbed to our salty soil already.) The purple tones could be from windburn; this plant is up on our deck (stilt house) and we did have a cold snap.

Thumbnail by decklife
Keaau, HI

It looks like a young Nightshade, Solanum americanum. Need to see flowers to be sure.

Rockport, TX(Zone 9b)

The nightshade I posted pictures of the other day has toothed leaf margins, whereas this is smooth. Maybe it's another type; will dheck out some more pix.

Keaau, HI

There are definitely different looking types of Nightshade. Three types of Nightshade were lumped into Solanum americanum: Solanum fauriei, Solanum nigrum, and Solanum nodiflorum.

The plant with the "toothed margins" used to fall under Solanum nodiflorum; the plant above with more entire margins and flushed with purple used to fall under Solanum nigrum.

They are now considered the same species, although they are at least different varieties.

It may be safe to note the difference as Solanum americanum var. nodiflorum and Solanum americanum var. nigrum.

Aloha, Dave

NE Medina Co., TX(Zone 8a)

It might be Pigeonberry...hard to tell at this time of year. Here is some pics:
http://www.sbs.utexas.edu/bio406d/images/pics/phy/rivina_humilis.htm

This message was edited Dec 22, 2008 11:25 AM

Keaau, HI

Rivina humilis is generally a much more glabrous plant than Solanum americanum.

Flowers will verify the species.

Rockport, TX(Zone 9b)

Thanks so much! I'll nurture this little guy till it blooms. I don't understand the "glabrous" bit. I see that it means without hair, but is that in reference to the leaves or the stems or both?

Keaau, HI

Glabrous means shiny leaves.

Northumberland, United Kingdom(Zone 9a)

Glabrous just means hairless, not necessarily the leaves, you can also have bark (e.g. Ulmus glabra), twigs, flowers, fruit, etc., described as glabrous.

Resin

Rockport, TX(Zone 9b)

Thanks!

Keaau, HI

Let me clarify; I meant shiny leaves; and the leaves of Rivina humilis are glabrous.

Rockport, TX(Zone 9b)

Yes, I understood. This plant does not have shiny leaves. So it probably is one of the nightshades you mentioned. Thanks!

San Antonio, TX(Zone 8b)

Actualy, the Rivina humilis foliage is variable; that is, the leaves may be glabrous (smooth) to pubescent (fuzzy). My plants' foliage turns maroonish in color in cold weather. It is supposed to be salt tolerant so maybe something else caused your 3 plants to die.

http://www.wildflower.org/gallery/result.php?id_image=12431

http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/58615/

Keaau, HI

Thanks Htop, all of the Rivina humilis plants I have seen in Hawai'i are glabrous. The description says they range from glabrous to puberulent.

Rockport, TX(Zone 9b)

When it comes to salt tolerance, I have found that in my yard even the most salt-tolerant plants sometimes don't make it. The soil is fill dirt and the soil test showed sodium content at past the halfway mark on the page. Meanwhile, the wind is intense, And Hurricane Ike added to the saltiness, as the storm surge caused backup and overflow of drainage which put about a third of my yard under the salt water. The Rivini went in some time later.

Keaau, HI

Hey Decklife, are you growing Batis and Salicornia?

Rockport, TX(Zone 9b)

I'm pretty sure I've got Batis growing in our right of way,
And I did have Salicornia bigelovii (which people here kindly identified for me). It is all brown and dead-looking, though, so I'm hoping that's just a winter thing, and not Hurricane Ike storm surge fatality. I had not expected that.
Salicornia virginica is still alive in nearby lots. The Salicornia bigelovii specimen I have/had is the only one around that I had found - a gorgeous bright green.

Barmera, Australia

G'Day
By golly Metrosideros I admire your knowledge and attention to detail and I don't remember, in my short membership, you ever being wrong but occasioally misunderstood.
Do you have Pachecornias over there? Here they grow amongst the Salicornias on the salt flats and have much larger segments and are a bright shiny green. Here those type of plants growing on salt or tidal flats are referred to as Samphires. Is the same name used in your neck of the woods?
Regards to All

Keaau, HI

Hi Stake,

I've never heard of Pachecornia. We have Batis maritima growing in most of the salt flats across the State. Anything else in that Family is cultivated.
Salicornia's are recommended here as a xeriscape plant.

Aloha, Dave

Barmera, Australia

G'Day Metrosideros
You cause me great concern when you say that you haven't heard of a plant. I immediately think what have I messed up this time. Well it is the spelling the plant is Pachycornia and according to the "Plants of Sth Aust" we have three species, robusta, tenuis & triandra. Over the next few days I will see if I can photograph one for you. They are not as plentiful as Salicornias, along the lines of a thousand Salicornias one Pachycornia.
Regards

Rockport, TX(Zone 9b)

I got a bloom on this the other day, and it exactly matched the blooms on the nightshade that's growing wild in our yard. So I'll mark this as solved.

San Antonio, TX(Zone 8b)

Thanks for the update.

Barmera, Australia

G'Day
I lost this thread so posted a photo of the Pachycornia with the C & S.
Now that I have found it I'll post the photo here. There has been a name change now Pachypodium
Regards

Thumbnail by Stake
Keaau, HI

Hi Stake, your plant looks closely related to Saliconia in the Chenopodium Family. Pachypodium is in the Apocynaceae.

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