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nightshade family

the nightshade, or potato, family of flowering plants (order Solanales), with 102 genera and nearly 2,500 species, many of considerable economic importance as food and drug plants. Among the most important of these are the potato (Solanum tuberosum); eggplant (S. melongena); tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum); garden, or capsicum, pepper (Capsicum annuum and C. frutescens); tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum); deadly nightshade, the source of belladonna (Atropa belladonna); the poisonous jimsonweed (Datura stramonium) and nightshades (S. nigrum, S. dulcamara, and others); and many garden ornamentals, such as the genera Petunia, Lycium, Solanum, Nicotiana, Datura, Salpiglossis, Browallia, Brunfelsia, Cestrum, Schizanthus, Solandra, Streptosolen, and Nierembergia.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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