Solanaceae, the nightshade family.
Plant: Clambering, sticky-hairy plant, to 3' long, with bell-shaped, dark-centered, dull yellow flowers. Perennial.
Flowers: Dull yellow, with purplish-brown center, 3/4", funnel- or bell-shaped with five lobes, five pointed sepals, and five short stamens. Flowers solitary in leaf axils.
Leaves: Alternate, ovate to heart-shaped, 1"-4". Petioled with a few teeth and a wavy, undulating margin. Stalks and veins very hairy, the leaf surfaces somewhat less so.
Fruit: A yellow berry enclosed by a papery husk about 1" long.
Habitat: Clearings, Open woods, thickets, waste areas.
There are several native species of ground-cherry, all with dark-centered yellow flowers.
This one is the hairiest. The plant is in the tomato family; the
tomatillo (Mexican husk tomato) is a member of the same genus (P. philadelphica).
The ripe berry is edible; the foliage and green fruit poisonous.
Where to find it:
Not common in the park. I have seen it only in a weedy patch by the pond
about 100 yards down the west trail from the lodge.