Here is one POISON plant we find growing all around Pittsburgh: Horse Nettle (Solanus carolinese).
It is actually not related to (wild edible) nettles at all. Horse Nettle is a nightshade, and is quite poisonous. It’s relatives are the poisonous European nightshade, black or deadly nightshade and silverleaf nightshade.
According to the book Edible Wild Plants, the leaves and fruits contain an alkaloid called solanine. If ingested, they can cause vomiting, nausea, abdominal pains and other gastrointestinal complaints.
The flowers are quite beautiful: the 5 petals are white to light purple, and the center is bright yellow. The stems and leaves are hairy and thorny.
Please do not be confused by the word “nettle” in this plant’s common name. Solanum carolinese is a poisonous plant, and should definitely be avoided.
Have fun, stay safe.
Food Under Foot