Step 9: Solanum nigrum

Picture of Solanum nigrum
Solanum nigrum, commonly known as Black nightshade is the next one the children came upon. Some people suggest not to eat this plant but we used to cook the leaves and berries as vegetable. This plant is also growing in our back yard.

Botanical Name Solanum nigrum from the family Solanaceae

Local Names : Manathakkaali in Tamil and Kakamachi in Sanskrit

Plant Identification

The plant grows to about four feet tall, the leaves are oval to diamond shaped having little white star-like flowers with yellow cores, The raw berries are green, small in size and turn to a shiny black when ripe. 

Medicinal uses (Quoted from the referred website)

S. nigrum is an important ingredient in traditional Indian medicines. Infusions are used in dysentery, stomach complaints and fever. The juice of the plant is used on ulcers and other skin diseases. The fruits are used as a tonic, laxative, appetite stimulant; and also for treating asthma and "excessive thirst". Traditionally the plant was used to treat tuberculosis. It is known as Peddakasha pandla koora in the Telangana region. This plant's leaves are used to treat mouth ulcers that happen during winter periods of Tamil Nadu, India. It is known as Manathakkali keerai in Tamil Nadu and Kaachi Soppu in Karnataka, and apart from its use as a home remedy for mouth ulcers, is used in cooking like spinach. In North India, the boiled extracts of leaves and berries are also used to alleviate liver-related ailments, including jaundice. In Assam, the juice from its roots is used against asthma and whooping cough

Reference : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solanum_nigrum